I need a deadline. In our house, things are accomplished in priority order. I am not a list maker, because I don't even want to think about what is happening three months from now. I am only going to work on what needs to be done this week, or, at the most, two weeks from now. I want to be more organized, and I am making incremental improvement in that regard. But, basically, if I am not pressured to accomplish it, it won't get done.
Yesterday, I was reading the website dedicated to the NECRWA conference that I will be attending in April. The post detailed all the preparations being made, and how there was still space available if we knew of anyone who might want to attend. (And if you do, you can visit them on Facebook!) Then they mentioned that there were still open editor and agent appointments. I wasn't sure how to interpret this information.
The overall tone of the announcement made me nervous for the organizers. Have you ever sent out invitations to a child's birthday party, and when you don't get immediate responses, you fear your baby has no friends? That was the vibe. Of course, I know that can't be true, because when I went to book a hotel room, the whole joint was sold out, and I had to weasel my way into Delia's room. So, I thought maybe they were just overcompensating, in an effort to make sure their seminars are packed full of enthusiastic romance writers. (Are there any other kind? Don't you have to be somewhat positive in nature to believe in the triumph of love?)
However, when I read about the open appointments, I wasn't so sure of their booking success. I think one wants to ensure that the kind folks who have given of their time (or been paid to show up) are rewarded with lots of eager attendees. So, naturally, I thought I should help make those agents feel wanted. I would make an appointment to see whichever agent or editor was underbooked. I would take the next month to finish my manuscript, and the two weeks after that to shine it up, just in case the lonesome editor wanted a final copy. I would have a deadline!
I mentioned this idea to my friend, Janet, who I am sure screamed, "WHHAATT?? NO, NO, NO!!!" in the privacy of her apartment, but then took the time to calmly recommend that I not inadvertently set myself up to fail. I did, in fact, confirm with the conference organizer that it is highly recommended that one not take meetings until the novel is finished. So, I'm screwed on the forcibly created deadline idea. Now, I will have to resort to actual ambition to get the damn thing written.
I suppose I could try and trick myself, by pretending I have an upcoming meeting. We used to have a cleaning woman, but I let her go in an attempt to save money. And also because it drove me crazy that I basically had to tidy my whole house in preparation for the actual cleaning. The Captain recommended that I just imagine she was coming, pick up all the crap twice a month, and the house would stay in good shape.
I am never going to finish this book.