Saturday, August 18, 2012

Christmas is coming

by Bruce Luck

I’ve been looking at writing lately from a bunch of points of view, subscribing to various blogs and whatnot. An interesting article appeared on bookbaby, a source I think for writers thinking of e-publishing.

The author is Beth Hayden from this site:

She says when an editor asked her how quickly she could finish a project, she considered then gave her most aggressive timetable: four months. The editor asked if she could complete it in six weeks. Ms. Hayden thought it impossible yet set a deadline and then her sights on finishing by then.

I set deadlines. I’ll get it done by Christmas. I’ll finish before schools out because I won’t get any writing done with kids being home. The problem is I don’t set a goal, but name a time period when I would like to have it done. Or maybe I set the goal, but haven’t figured out a way to get there.

So when I read Beth’s article, I looked at my goal: the 1st draft of my current project done by the time school starts. There are two sides to kids being off for vacation. Mom and Dad can hardly wait for school to start again, but writers with teaching day jobs see it differently. Done by end of summer vacation: a lofty goal. I’ll settle for it to be done by Christmas.

The article inspired and I decided to actually work toward making it happen. It was/is a lofty goal and time is running out. Hayden offered time management ideas, but the key to success basically involves plopping yourself in front of a keyboard and banging something out. Just write. At a WIFYR breakout a few years ago, Claudia Mills advised writing a minimum of one hour a day. I took that to heart and set it as mantra. It works most of the time. Your other life still must be dealt with and there are days/weeks when it forces writing to the back burner.

Some of you are looking forward to writing time when the kiddies head off to school. Maybe you can finish something by Christmas break. But me? I’ve got two more days and I just might finish my rough draft.

1 comment:

Yamile said...

I love NaNoWriMo for this reason. Every December 1st, I have a new manuscript to fix for a whole year or more.