D is for DEADLINE

The April Blogging from A to Z Challenge continues!

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D is for DEADLINE

 If nobody dies when they miss a deadline, what’s the big deal?  Because your editor wants to kill you.

If you’ve made a commitment, set a date, and got someone else on board with your project, you have an obligation to follow through.

This may not have been a big deal when you were writing that 5-paragraph essay for Mrs. Whatshername in 6th grade…especially if it wasn’t an assignment you had any say in.  BUT, you’re playing with the big kids now, and deadlines matter.

DEADLINE = Deliver or Die

I’m amazed at how many writers think a deadline is flexible.  As if the calendar is some kind of temporal gateway, and dates can be sucked back and forth through time to accommodate the writer.  As an editor, I can assure you that missing a deadline throws off the whole series of events that must occur once your manuscript is submitted.  (Sorry, it’s not as perfect as you imagine.)  Editing, proofreading, formatting, proofreading again, citation checks, copyright checks, photo attributions…. there is an endless list of items that need to be acted on after you’ve delivered your piece.  And while you may have stayed up all night to finish that puppy, I can assure you I do not want to be up all night trying to catch up to your missed deadline!

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The fact is, we’re all just dominoes in a long chain.  When one falls, the others follow – usually in a pleasing pattern that ends with a polished piece we can all enjoy.  But if the first domino never falls, the rest of us are just left standing there.

Be the King Domino.  Cause a chain reaction.  Meet your Deadline.

Leave a comment for me, if you please.  Writing is a lonely business.

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