For me it works out that at times I have a lot to write and am eager to get to my computer every day. The ideas flow and I am constantly working on them. My friends recognize these times because I will fade off and look distant for a few moments. Usually I am considering a scene or story point that just popped into my head and am working it out. These are some of the best times when I am deep inside my story and the characters.
Then there are the in-between times. When I finish a novel and am at the editing and smoothing out stage, my brain is cooling off. The writers battery is drained. It bothers me at times. When I finished my first novel and couldn't seem to get myself up and running with the next right away I actually worried that I only had one good book in me. I fretted, which is a hobby of mine. But, after a while I found my battery was good to go and I started in again.
more to my unpublished work. The Bark stories were part of this recharging period. Nothing too deep, just fun and simple. I have mentioned before that I wrote some Star Trek novels that are unpublished. Well, that is another area where I can just fun-write. I have a huge backlog of short episodes in my own little Star Trek story line with my own characters and events, each one hardly long enough to be called a short story, but I don't really pour myself into them. I don't worry about the idea of them being published one day, or needing to be edited all that much, just write for writings sake. Just about the only use I get out of them is during long car rides I will read them aloud like a radio show.
It can take me as long as writing a full length novel to write a 100 page short story because I take it easy. During this time my battery gets recharged and I am ready to write again. That doesn't mean that I will pump out a new novel every year, sometimes I simply am not inspired and I keep plugging away at the shorts. But, I never stop writing, and I try to not worry about it. If I begin to worry, then this will become real work and I just don't know if I am ready for that.
Last note: When my battery is really low and I am not even wanting to write a short story, I let it go. I read, draw, stitch more, watch movies, listen to music, do anything that is inspirational. I am not trying to inspire a book, just keep my creative nature nurtured and primed for when novel inspiration strikes.
p.s. if you ask nicely, I will tell you about my Star Trek story.