The Duality of Deadlines

It’s been an eventful week. I had a long-distance interview with someone who makes a living as a freelance editor, later that evening applied for a freelance gig writing 50 pages of web copy (with the potential for three similar projects), landed the gig the very next day and have been writing my tail off ever since. Three things:

1. WOO HOO!!! PAID FREELANCE WORK!!!!!!!!!111!!1!1!(gratuitous use of exclamation marks1)!!!!1!1!!

2. Good god, am I knackered. There are less than 50 minutes left in the week and I am already in my pajama pants and sitting in bed but I’m determined to get a blog post up before I crash! Deadlines can really take it out of you. Speaking of deadlines…

3. “Deadlines are your friends,” a great writer and friend once told me. And while I’ll probably always find deadlines stressful, I also think she is right. I have written 37 pages of web copy in the last three days alone. Do you know how much more that is than what I manage to put into my book each day? It’s upsetting. But the beautiful thing is this: deadlines give us a goal. When we have a goal– particularly one that pressures us to perform quickly– something amazing happens. We stop making excuses, sit down to the task, and do perform quickly– without nitpicking over any specific details. It might not be the most meticulous work we’ve ever done (at least on the first draft), but I am inspired by the mere fact that I can write 400-500 words an hour. Maybe deadlines are just what my novel needs!

Then again, Douglas Adams, author of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, has this to say:

“I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.”

Anyways, it’s approaching midnight now, so I’ll get to my other news: I was listening to 8tracks yesterday when I heard a song by Justin Bieber (Boyfriend)…and actually liked it. Whelp, guess the world really is ending this December– ’cause if THAT isn’t a sign of the impending apocalypse, I don’t know what is.

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