I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by. —Douglas Adams
I’m notoriously bad at estimating how long it will take me to write a novel, or anything else. Apparently, my image of myself is based on the speed at which I think I ought to be writing...not the one at which I actually write. So I often create deadlines that whoosh past. Not because I’m not working, but just because I’m not working at the fastest speed humanly possible.
Now, don’t get me wrong—I still think that deadlines are useful, and I like to give myself one. But after over fifteen years as a professional writer, I can tell you that the most important measure is whether or not I’m making regular, meaningful progress on my work. Sometimes, that progress doesn’t look like much. Then again, it can take time to come up with the right idea, and there is no point in writing a lot of pages of the wrong idea. That often feels like progress, but it isn’t necessarily progress toward the actual goal, which is to write something worth reading, not to hit an arbitrary word count.
No, the important part of the goal is not the deadline, it’s the input. Am I writing daily? Am I experimenting with new ideas? Am I considering character motivations? Am I crafting meaningful events?
This is why I love Bookflow’s “LitBit” features. Every day when I log in, I can see how many days I’ve written this week. When I click on a project, I can see how far along I am on both my outline and my manuscript. I can see when I’m making steady progress toward my goal...and when I’m not.
And when I’m not, there’s only one cure...make those little purple squares pile up. Bookflow is my accountability partner, and it never lets me off the hook.
What are you waiting for? Start your free, 28-day trial. Bookflow is ready to be your new accountability partner too!