02 November, 2011

Can't Force Deadlines

Writers' Wednesday!!!

Usually, it's that you can't force creativity.  However, creativity works under looming deadlines more often than not.  Saying that you missed a deadline because you didn't want to force your creativity won't work.  So, what's a person to do if the creativity still hasn't shown up in the zero hour?

Get uncreative.

Slap down those cliches.  Hit all the predictable points.  Put archetypes smack-dab in a metaphor and wrap them up in deli-sliced cheese.  Do this early enough into the process so that you can fake it until you make it.

Chances are pretty good that you'll get out some great work in a second or third draft of derivative drivel.  In this regard, it's not so much what you write as it is what you right.

I used to miss deadlines by a day or two consistently.  In junior year of high school, my English teacher nicknamed me "Mr. Late."  (not my only nickname, but the only one relevant here)  I pursued perfection and waited for inspiration.  Had I turned in my papers on time, I would have received all A's.

Thankfully, it was a lesson I learned well.  (I'll never forget the look on her face when I held up my paper as she was habitually skipping my desk.)  I can do good work on time.

If you're feeling pressure of an upcoming deadline, stop being creative long enough to get ahead of the game again.  I don't suggest plagiarizing.  It takes more time to look up and copy something than it does to just be unoriginal and obvious.

Deadlines can even be worked into your structure very well.  They help set parameters.  Love your deadlines.  The more you use them to your advantage and don't stress the creativity, the better your productivity and creativity will be.  Make them living-deadlines.

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