October 15, 2010


"A deadline is, simply put, optimism in its most ass-kicking form. It's a potent force that, when wielded with respect, will level any obstacle in its path. This is especially true when it comes to creative pursuits."

from the book No Plot? No Problem!: A Low-Stress, High Velocity Guide to Writing a Novel in 30 Days by Chris Baty.

I found this quote while looking up information about National Novel Writing Month (which is November, by the way), but the sentiment isn't just applicable to novel-writing, it works for anything. Especially for me, since I'm one of those people who gets easily paralyzed by overthinking and self-criticism. A deadline forces me to brush those pesky voices in my head aside, to "make it work with what I have" because I don't have the time to find the "perfect" piece of paper, ribbon, etc. or to make it "absolutely perfect" before I'm done. And in the end, I'm more creative because of it: while my projects sometimes turn out totally different than I might have done them if I had more time, they're usually pretty good results, or ever pretty darn good, actually!

(part of this is because of my ability to be easily side-tracked-- if I actually did take the time to find the "perfect" piece of paper, because I knew it was in my stash somewhere, I'd re-surface two hour later. ...after finding four other things I looked for earlier but couldn't find, paging through a couple magazines that caught my eye, getting an idea for at least three different projects that I'd start if only I had time, and then totally forgetting what I was looking for in the first place.)

see, it's happened here, too! all I wanted was to write down this quote so I wouldn't forget it, and I've gone off on a tangent about my creative and organizational processes...

Anyway, I'll be back soon with more photos of my estate sale finds from last weekend. My friend Melissa sent me a link to a site that lists local sales, and I am trying very hard not to be tempted by the listings.

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