Some days the writing really works – it just pops and flows – but other days it feels like you’re in the center ring, in the cage with it, your chair in one sweaty-palmed hand and your whip in the other. Across from you the writing is crouched, staring you down, showing off its roar and its razor sharp teeth.

To pile on another metaphor, I have come to see the writer’s life like being invested in the stock market, in the blue chips. You’re in it for the long haul, the return that will come months if not years hence. You’re a fool if you let any single day cause you to stall and falter or to shout and celebrate. You’re best to quietly enjoy it when it’s good and just keep going when it’s not, trusting the investment you’re making as you build your writing portfolio.