Writers Advice: Create an Accountability Pool

By Marcia Meier

Most writers I know struggle with finding the time, and energy, to complete their writing projects. Many of us hold day jobs or have busy family lives that interfere with quality writing time. One thing I learned from nearly 20 years in the newspaper business is the value of a deadline. There’s nothing like it to get one motivated.

A book contract can provide that incentive (although there are writers who don’t seem to mind missing them repeatedly – that’s a discussion for another time). But what if you don’t have a contract yet? It’s possible to set your own deadline, but that’s not very effective, or even realistic. It’s easy to blow off a self-imposed deadline.

So, I’m going to suggest you gather several writer friends and create an accountability pool. My writing buddies and I have just done this.

To read Marcia Meier’s entire article, click on http://tinyurl.com/2a69got

Marcia Meier, former director of the Santa Barbara Writers’ Conference, was a luncheon speaker at the 2009 NSNC Conference in Ventura, Calif.

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The National Society of Newspaper Columnists promotes professionalism and camaraderie among columnists and other writers of the serial essay, including bloggers. NSNC advocates for columnists and free-press issues.