I'm not one of those people who actually believes in a "muse," even figuratively - writing is a matter of putting the time in with your butt in a chair (and it helps if you're not alt-tabbing to check the Internet or play solo Labyrinth: The War On Terror every few minutes).
Lately, though, I have been realizing that the creative "spark," or whatever you want to call it, is more sensitive than I thought to the environment and life circumstances. It's not something you can just conjure up on demand when it's time to write if your head is not there.
Nonetheless, I've been trying the last week or so to force my way through, especially given the paltry progress this year so far.
I finally finished another chapter. The current word count is 181K, and I'm on Chapter 35.
This manuscript is really a mess. I hope my betas will forgive me for inflicting this on them. I will do my best to fix it first after I finish the rough draft, but right now, just getting words down seems the only way forward.