Everyone wants to write faster, and with good reason. Learning to speed up your writing can help you by:
- Getting ideas out while they’re fresh.
- Keeping several projects in the works at once.
- Honing your writing technique through constant practice.
- Helping you produce finished works faster.
There are plenty of ways to pick up your writing pace, but one really effective way is to give yourself a deadline to beat.
How does it work? This handy graphic says it all:
Simple wisdom, but oh, so true. When you have a deadline, a true deadline, all other obligations, distractions, and reasons to goof off seem to slip away. You become driven to work toward completion before the deadline slips away.
You may be thinking: But if I set my own deadline, what keeps me from breaking it? After all, it’s just me. Au contraire, mon frere. There are many ways that “little ‘ol you” can hold “writing you” to a strict deadline — strict enough that you’ll have plenty of encouragement to stick with it. Here’s how:
Write Faster with Self-Imposed Deadlines
First, decide whether you’re motivated more by good consequences or bad ones. For example, would you be more inclined to write faster if doing so would earn you $50 to spend as you please or, if you don’t meet your deadline, cause you to give $50 to your spouse’s charity of choice? I know, I know, giving to a charity isn’t actually bad, but it is, after all, your $50. Or perhaps you’d rather have a day without chores versus a day doing everyone else in your household’s chores? The choice is yours! No one knows you better than you do, so choose something that you know will do the trick.
Next, set incremental deadlines rather than one big, huge, looming deadline. Set a series of them with the reward or consequence you chose earlier offered at the end of the series. Why? Because you get nice hits of dopamine every time you successfully complete even a small task. The more dopamine your brain produces, the faster you work. This way, you’ll find yourself writing even faster as you cruise past your mini-deadlines. This blog talks about this process in detail if you want to understand all the neurological goodness behind it.
What are you waiting for? Make a commitment to write faster beginning this week. Don’t forget to let me know how it goes!
See you on the next page!