In undergrad, my best writing mostly came about by accident. I stumbled into the right story or else caught myself on a “good” writing day or else was incited to revise in order to better my grade. Even then I knew that you couldn’t wait for inspiration to strike, but it was hard to imagine that anything could get done if inspiration never arrived.
These days, though, my best writing is produced by hard work. It comes about because I show up and sit down and force myself to produce words. I know that even an “uninspired” night– after night after night after night– can still be productive. I have learned that showing up produces a bad first draft. After which, showing up then produces a better second draft. Rinse and repeat.
Showing up matters. In some ways, it’s what matters the most.