As an unpublished, undiscovered talent (as of yet), I still know what turns a profit in this world. Better than novelty, practicality, or convenience, sincerity is the number one top seller.
How do I know? Because I work as a marketer. Every day, I meet hundreds of people and endeavor to not only hold their attention, but convince them to accept an offer from a complete stranger.
Some days, I don’t feel like doing it. On days like that, do you know what never improves my success rate? Faking it. People sniff out insincerity like bloodhounds and, if there’s a more certain way to guarantee distrust, it’s through dishonesty.
Writing is no different. When you arrange worlds and people and plots, you are asking the reader to suspend disbelief. If you force it, they’ll notice. That’s how a writer kicks a reader out of a story.
So how do I improve my success rate at work when I don’t feel up to task? Easy. I don’t smile if I don’t feel like smiling. I don’t laugh if I don’t feel like laughing. Basically, I don’t do what I don’t feel like doing.
And your writing should be the same. Nothing should be forced by the writer’s will. You may decide that Betty Lou and George are getting married, but maybe halfway through the story, your characters start shaking their heads at the idea. Listen to them!
After all, adventures are almost always spontaneous.