Friday, June 25, 2010

In Praise of Deadlines

Up front I will admit that I’m a type A personality. I enjoy lists, schedules, due dates, etc. The way to make my lower lip quiver is to throw a wrench into my plans for the day. I will whimper, “Um, that’s not what I had planned.”

So when I praise deadlines, you can write off part of the praise as the ramblings of one of those first-born type As. Go ahead say it—my kids do. Now that you got that out of the way, here is why I love deadlines. They keep me honest with myself. For example, in the novel revisions I’m doing, I’ve set my own deadline. And I’m really thankful for it. Today I’d been working on the revisions and had the panicky feeling: what-am-I-doing/what-if-I’m-doing-this-wrong. Normally, I would break out a square of my favorite Lindt white chocolate with coconut or dark chocolate with orange and almonds and start my private pity party—either that or I’d send an email to my favorite rant listener. (Thanks, Sharmon.*) But because I had a deadline I told myself, “Suck it up, girl. Get with the program.” I didn’t eat the chocolate—actually I’m out of the white chocolate (time to take a trip to Walmart).

A deadline helps me do what I need to do and keeps me from making excuses. Yay, deadlines! Which reminds me, I have several Shakespeare costumes that I need to start sewing. Ack!

*Okay, okay. Deadlines don’t keep me from ranting emails. They just make them shorter, maybe.


  1. Yay! Sewing is fun! Wish I could help, but I really know nothing about costumes...heh.

  2. Yep, I'm a list-making, plan-oriented type A, too. My husband has been happily trying to wreck my schedule since 1993. And I love him for it. Sometimes.

  3. Shakespean costumes, wow. You must have some superior sewing skills!

    As much as I've always been a scheduler and like to give myself deadlines, my procrastinator hubby has rubbed off on me a little. I now seem to need the added exterior pressure of monthly critique group meetings to produce work for.

  4. *Nods.* I can completely sympathize with you here.

    (Do you supposed God emptied you of white chocolate as to assist you in your hour of deadlines?)

  5. "i love deadlines. I love that whooshing sound they make when they fly by."

    I am pretty sure that is from Julie and Julia

  6. Deadlines are very excellent tools! I could not accomplish much at work without them, and NaNoWriMo is the sole reason for my second book being (almost) done. But unfortunately my self-imposed deadlines don't help a teeny, eeny bit. I am too good at rationalizing/justifying extensions. I need an accountability partner!