Many writers I know prefer the free flow of being a writer because they aren't under the crunch of a deadline. There is no boss standing over you barking orders, no projects schedule forcing you to multi-task, and no co-workers constantly asking for updates. They are free to write as the inspiration comes to them and submit (if they are traditionally published) when the book is ready.
If they are traditionally published through one of the big publishers there can be deadlines but most of my friends do not fall into this category at this time. The small press and vanity press published authors will get a deadline for edits after the publisher has accepted the story but rarely do they have a deadline for submitting the initial book. WHen you're self-published there are no deadlines at all unless they are self imposed. This is actually a problem for me.
I have found that the pressure of a deadline is motivating for me and without one I get easily distracted. In my last post I discussed how I am now using exercise to clear the chaos and be able to breakthrough writer's block and keep pushing to accomplish things on my ever present to do list. However I find without that looming pressure I still struggle to get more than a little writing done at a time. Even my chores need something pressing to make me do them. I have to make my to do list and then promise my boyfriend the list will be done before he gets home from work or I will allow myself to get distracted and then the only things that get done are dishes and laundry.
I know I need the deadline to push me but the only one I had was still over a year away so I wasn't feeling the motivation. I have several signings coming up this year that I wanted to have more books available but they aren't complete. I made what some will consider a questionable decision to put cover mockups on my preorder forms for a couple of my later signings so that forces me to have to finish the books. Every time I have pushed myself to write a book there has been a challenge like that pushing me. I can't wait to share excerpts and the covers in the coming weeks and months. What do you do to push yourself toward your dreams?