I noticed while in the process of writing my most recent book that I sometimes need a little warm-up before I can do my best work, so I started writing a little throw-away piece each day that allowed me to "prime the pump" and enhance the quality of my prose.
This process of priming the pump had many positive side-effects. It gave me a sense of freedom that I don't usually have when I'm in the middle of a project. I could write about any topic, say anything I wanted, and there was absolutely no pressure. It helped me process my emotions, explore my creativity and experiment with new subjects and writing methods. A few of the pieces I wrote were later incorporated into my book, and some of them even spawned new book ideas.
How often do you write for the sake of writing? Not for a book or blog, but just for yourself? It's so easy to get caught up in the external reasons we're writing -- for money or to meet a deadline -- that we can forget why we started doing this in the first place. Writing is a platform that allows us to share our ideas with others, but it's also an act of love and a vehicle for self-expression. It can be downright FUN, if we allow it to be, and incredibly fulfilling.
What's one thing you can do today to "prime the pump" and access the full spectrum of your writing abilities?