Okay, so I haven’t had to deal with a lot of ‘official’ writing deadlines. Yet. Does NANOWRIMO count?
In my day job, working at a school, I’ve found that deadlines and due dates are not quite as substantial as they used to be. Maybe I’m dating myself, but when I was given a due date by a teacher, it was THAT day, not the next day or the next period.
I realize that the digital age has a lot to do with people believing they can fudge on a deadline. Like, when I tell someone something is due for the newsletter by a certain day and they come two days later and ask if it has been posted yet. If not they ask, can’t you just stick this in? And, being the enabler that I am, I say yes.
So, as you can imagine, when someone gives me a deadline I try very hard to keep it. In fact, I prefer having deadlines. If you tell me to ‘get to it whenever,’ it might never get done. There is always something to distract me or keep me too busy to get to it. If, on the other hand, you tell me you need something in ten minutes, you will probably have it in nine. It’s not so much an over achiever issue as a fear of disappointing someone.
Recently signing with an agent for my writing, I have had a few very minor deadlines. For the most part, they were self induced. I haven’t been told they need something by Tuesday or all bets are off. To be honest, the agency has been great to work with and highly motivating. I have to admit it was nice to have someone tell me they liked a manuscript so much they wanted to represent it. Once I got over that thrill, I accepted that it meant getting down to serious work. This weekend was the first real deadline I had for them. Yes, I set it, but I told the agent I would have something done by this weekend. It was telling someone else that made it a REAL deadline to me.
Did I make it? I have one more quick read through before I send it off, so yes, I think I can safely say I made it. And dang but it feels great!
So, I would like to know how YOU feel about deadlines. Don’t worry, though. There is no set in stone deadline for your answer. Post any time, any day, no due date rules 🙂