A very quirky (very brilliant) man once said, “To take my work seriously would be the height of folly.”
The bother of being serious in that mind-hand-pen-paper dynamic rattles even the most proficient writer to the point of causing doubt. In my opinion, every folly simply needs a good edit.
Rely on your instinct.
The little impressions in my daily commute on the 6 train, the moments that imprint themselves while I’m recharging or unwinding…these are the things that leave me rooting around in the dark abyss of my purse for a pen and the back of a receipt. You have to grab them before they dissolve completely. If you don’t keep them, they were never present.
If I were truly serious, I would probably carry a notebook.
In the spirit of my folly, a pen and some luck are good enough.