A lot of us have had the experience of wondering why something that comes relatively easy to us is seen, in the academic culture, as a form of torture. The blogger Profacero has startlingly excellent set of posts on this issue. She states seemingly counterintuitive axioms like "writing is fun and publishing is easy." Crazy, right? But I happens to agree with her.
Graduate school consists largely of training in research. Every course I took, except a single one in pedagogy, was designed to train me as a scholar. Even people who end up working in jobs where they don't do much research have had training to be scholars. The PhD remains a research degree. If, after completely such a degree, you still don't know how to do research, then something has gone wrong. Writing itself is easy. The only hard part is sitting down to do it regularly. Once that regular schedule is established, all it takes is working systematically to solve certain problems. There will be easier and harder days, as with anything else. Publishing is also very easy, since journal editors actually want to publish good articles. Once again, "easy" does not mean a total absence of rejection.
So what makes it hard? Part of it is the "volvo" culture denounced by Stanley Fish in this classic essay. We don't want to admit that it is fun because our claims of moral superiority are based on suffering. Of course, the working conditions of academia often crowd research out. Excessive teaching loads, lack of leaves and sabbaticals, an explosion of service and committee work, and sometimes an outright hostility toward (or envy of) research combine forces. The idea that research is hard provides the convenient excuse in such cases. Profacero also notes that the mantra about how hard it is serves a gate-keeping function.
I recommend you read all the posts in this on-going series. Since I have always taught at a an R1, I always feel like someone is going to answer, "sure, easy for YOU." So I'm glad someone else said it first.