Writing to deadlines

10/09/2013 11:58

On Friday, I visited Helium and picked a number of assignments from those available, a couple of which were due within 4 days.   I was confident I would be able to make a start on them over the weekend - a first draft, at least.   500 words - I can knock that out in half-an-hour!

Sadly, life in various forms took over my weekend leaving me with no time for writing, let alone researching the biography of Michael Crawford that was amongst the assignments.   Yesterday, I finally sat down to write and found that there were only 12 hours left in which to submit said biography.

Well, I searched the web and found out some interesting things about Mr Crawford (including the facts that he's been on Desert Island Discs three times and now lives in New Zealand) and threw them together in some kind of coherent order.   I then had to fight with Helium's slightly strange publishing method but I got it in within the deadline.

Is it the greatest thing I've ever written?   Probably not - but I wouldn't count it amongst the worst, either.   I'm getting to grips with this business of writing quickly!

The great thing about deadlines is that they focus the mind.   If you only have a certain number of hours to produce something, you need to make those hours count.   Drop everything else and think about that one thing.   If you need to research before you write, your focus narrows down to the information that is most relevant - and most easily available!   You then need to sort through the results, rearrange your notes and write around them to produce a narrative that flows.   Hopefully, you also have time to read through the piece at least a couple of times, tweaking as you go.

And before you know it, you have a piece that is worthy of being read by other people!

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