Reading Mike Kimera's post about a story he wrote that seemed to arrive in his head 'fully formed', and I have a sneaking suspicion this is how my best work happens.
Sometimes you slave and research and scrabble and revise, and eventually you tick all the boxes - a plot, characters, dialogue, etc etc. A perfectly workable story. Yet the times when you sit down and just strap yourself in, fingers rattle over the keyboard and voices actually Talk to you, like there's someone standing over your shoulder.
A few hours later, you have a piece of writing you hardly recognise, but everything about it hums. Hums in a very good way.
Would you get the seat-of-your-pants stories, the gifts from nowhere, without the hours, days, weeks spent trying to understand the passive voice and sentence structure? Is this what they're on about when they talk about the subconsious, or is it Jung's collective unconscious, or mere luck?
Either way, I've spent all morning writing a particularly turgid first paragraph, and I'm here now to ask the muse or the psyche or the synapses to start work, please. I can smell the story, I just can't write it. Come on and possess me, o demons of pithy language...