Inspiration will jilt you. Move on without it.

From Erin Rooney Doland‘s chapter in the excellent book, Manage Your Day-to-Day:

Leigh Michaels, prolific author of more than eighty romance novels, once said that “waiting for inspiration to write is like standing at the airport waiting for a train.” Conditions to produce one’s craft are rarely ideal, and waiting for everything to be perfect is almost always an exercise in procrastination.

Inspiration will leave you in the lurch and repeatedly break your heart. You still will love it and long for it and put up with its philandering ways. And you will wait and postpone good things in hopes that it will arrive any moment now.

The best way to summon it is to ignore it, play hard-to-get, and just start doing your work, whether you feel like it or not.

I aim to write something every day. Some days I wait and wait, longing for even a tiny nudge of inspiration, and the day gets late with no love from the muse. Then I just have to start writing something to keep that daily commitment, even if I’m sure what I write will be lame or trite or completely unoriginal. This is one of those posts.

Inspiration did not arrive, but I did.