Creativity doesn't simply happen. Sorry all you big ban theorist out there, but I know that nothing ever came from nothing. Creativity is not a random act of chance. Just like writing is not the product of words suddenly bumping into each other on a page and weaving themselves into sentences that cling in paragraphs, and paragraphs that lengthen into chapters.
You might think I'm stating the obvious here, but a book cannot happen of its own accord. If that were stating the obvious then more writer's would protect their creativity.
How do we protect our creativity?
Be still. Yup. That's it. We need to be still.
Life is noisy. Busy. Bold. And often in your face. As writer's we need to erect fences around the mental space required to create.
Put it in your diary. Ink it on the calendar. Write it on your arm. Make time to be alone without the noise of life.
You can find this anywhere. Libraries, parks, your bedroom, swimming in the ocean, walking at sunrise.
Stay with yourself in quietness long enough to discover what you think and if in fact you have anything worth saying, much less a whole book.
Find a way to quieten your mind, not by emptying it, but by focusing it. For me when I want to find stillness I take my camera and head outside. The photo above is an example of one afternoon on sunset at a local park when I simply needed to be still.
Isn't that called writing time? No. Writing time is writing time. Too much is going on in our heads when we write. Stillness is about refilling that space inside up where the words come from. It's about letting go of trying to figure out plot twists and character arcs and simply allowing ourselves to breathe. Why do you think it is that good ideas come to you when you're in the shower or dreaming? Cause you're STILL inside your mind. A quiet mind is has great capacity for creativity. An unquiet mind is... unquiet.