People sometimes ask me if I have a certain routine I go through before I write, something to put my mind in the right place. I've been to conferences where speakers advise a few moments of meditation, lighting the same scent of candle, or listening to some music that you find inspirational before you put your fingers to the keyboard. I have a slightly more straightforward approach.
I plop myself in front of the laptop and say, "Ok, Mindy. Make shit happen."
And honestly, isn't that what we're doing when we write? Making shit happen to people that don't exist? But forcing the fecal matter to flow isn't only restricted to the word count output for the day. When I give myself that one sentence pep-talk it covers all my bases.
Blog not ready to go for the next week?
Haven't tweeted for awhile?
Need to get on the crits for my partners?
Running out of interviewees?
Make all that shit happen.
More importantly, when I was still on the agent hunt I'd hit those stagnant pools of time. Queries are out wandering to people who may or may not be non-responders. Five out of my ten came back form rejections. I've got partials and fulls out but everyone knows that's not a guarantee and I shouldn't just twiddle my thumbs hoping they love me. So what did I do?
Made shit happen.
If I knew my query was ready and I didn't have a lot hanging in the wind, I sent out more. There's no hope in getting that YES email if that special person waiting to read my query doesn't know I exist yet.
So next time you feel like forward progress isn't on your side, ask yourself:
Did I make shit happen today?