A couple of days ago, I cracked a nail while trying to bust open a stubborn pistachio. My nails break easily as it is, but the fact that I was trying to eat something healthy when this happened added insult to injury.
This is often how I feel about writing. When I try to sit down and produce something but nothing will come, or else whatever comes is sub-par, it's like breaking a nail: a little painful, a lot disheartening. My beautiful words, like my well-shaped nails, fall apart before me.
Because it's not difficult for me to get discouraged, I have to be very careful when I write. I cannot allow myself to give up over one bad page or even a few broken ones. There's no one fail-proof strategy except this: to keep going, even through the pain. That's how we get to the things we want, whether it's a little green nut or a finished story.