In the most recent edition of Poets & Writers magazine Michael Chabon, a Pulitzer Prize winning author, was asked about the importance of the time he spent at the MacDowell colony - a prestigious writers retreat.

This was his reply:

"To do your best work as an artist, whatever the discipline, takes complete immersion in the work. You need to get caught in the slipstream, to draft along behind it as it carries you forward.

You get into a state where, even when you're not writing, everything you see, read, hear; every place you go; every newspaper you pick up; every conversation you chance to overhear feeds the work, because you are so saturated in it."

Ah. Yes. I've managed to get into that slipstream now and again.
But it's been awhile.
And I miss it.