Tick, Tick, Tick... (Yikes!)
"I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by."
English humorist & science fiction novelist (1952 - 2001)
For the record, I am not nor have I ever been in Douglas Adams' camp on this one. (Love his books, though!) Deadlines terrify me in a big way. I've never felt invigorated by them, although I have to admit they *do* motivate me, in the way a snapping, slavering Rottweiler on one's heels can inspire faster sprinting.
Someone needs to explain to my publisher that abject terror is no way to motivate the delicate creative psyche. (For the record, I'd prefer flowers, small but tasteful gifts, or perhaps a trail of large-denomination dead presidents sweetly coaxng me toward my goal.) But the trouble is, I can't really *blame* the publisher. Crazy as it seems now, I willingly agreed to the date circled in red on my calendar. All I can tell you is that it seemed like a good idea at the time.
The truth is, I've actually had the manuscript finished for a couple of weeks or more. I've sent it out for opinions and have spent many days going back over the corrections. A few more tweaks, and I'll be ready...
If only I didn't hear that darned clock ticking in my ear.
So what about you? Do deadlines motivate or scare you? When not on a publisher's or agent's deadline, do you set your own to get/keep you in the habit? Have you ever missed a deadline, and if so, how did you deal with it?