When’s your deadline? More importantly, what happens if you don’t meet it? There’s nothing about marking a date on the calendar that inspires action. The effectiveness of the deadline is in the consequence of missing it. Journalists don’t believe in writer’s block because they can’t afford to. The stakes are lower in the fiction racket, and that’s a problem. We’re not going to starve if we don’t finish our stories on time any more than we’re going to feast if we do (and what, by the way, does ‘on time’ mean to a fiction writer?)  We must set our own deadlines and impose our own penalties. If the writing life is like having homework forever, the best writers work as though someone might cancel Christmas if they start slacking. 
 
D-Day for the second draft of my novella is May 10th. If I don’t get a draft to my first reader by then, she won’t read it. I’m supposed to take a trip that week: if I don’t turn in my draft, I won’t get on the plane.
 
D-Day for this post is now. It’s not right, but it’s written.