Don’t know if you caught my guest-blog, “Digging those Deadlines” on Saturday at Writers Who Kill, (https://writerswhokill.blogspot.com,)
It’s a fun site, filled with writers who, like me, enjoy killing off their peeps on the pages! And If you jump on over, you can still see my post in their archives off to the right.
But for all you who missed it, here ya go! Just don’t forget to leave your thoughts below. Luv to hear from ya’ll on it!
SATURDAY, AUGUST 11, 2018
Digging Those Deadlines by Lisa Ciarfella
Lisa Ciarfella here with a warm hello and a toast to my first Writers Who Kill Blog post!
Humbled to be welcomed into the fray, I’m coming at ya’ll today on the topic of deadlines. And seeing as I missed mine here by nearly 24 hours, it’s a miracle you’re reading my post at all. That means my topic’s just about right. But like mom always says, if it were at all humanly possible I’d be late for my own funeral, so I guess it’s not that surprising. And like Douglas Adams author of “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy quote above, ” I’d venture to guess I’m not alone!
Not sure how ya’ll handle deadlines. But being nearly two years out of grad school, the memories of those looming, logistically impossible, never-ending nightmarish academic deadlines, small and tall, still hang over my head like a bad hangover the day after a night full of fun. You know those kinds of nights. The ones you thought were fun, but the next morning says otherwise!
Quizzes, exams, finals, papers, projects, and those all-consuming thesis deadlines tend to beat lowly grad students into submission until they can no longer function in the real world without them. You learn to lean into it though, cranking out what you must to get the job done. So what if that persnickety professor says that thing is due Tuesday at midnight on the dot in her inbox? Well, at 11:59 pm you’re chugging your twelfth espresso and hitting the submit button on your laptop, praying to the campus Gods that your WiFi doesn’t decide to go Kapow!n And if it does, there’s always the beg, borrow and plead your case ‘dog and pony’ show you can offer up. But it’s a crapshoot whether they’ll buy it or not. Either way, you either get the thing in on time, or die a slow academic death.
Out here in the real world, deadlines haven’t got any easier. I’d hoped they might, especially as a writer. But I’ve found that mandatory deadlines were actually much easier than self-imposed ones. Especially when it comes to blogging. Don’t know about ya’ll but running your own blog’s hard!
I started mine on a wing and a prayer, throwing up a WordPress site not knowing the first thing about it. But coming up with thoughtful, well-considered, interesting and timely topics to blog about every week is no easy feat. Especially when you consider there’s no money in it and the bills keep piling up. But what makes it super tough for me at least, is that no one’s laying out those deadlines anymore!
Tough as they were in school, not having ‘em at all is way worse. When I first started blogging, I thought three times a week sounded grand. Quickly, that went down to two. Then one. And now, I get out my posts when I can, and only when I think I have something interesting to say. (Oh yeah, that’s the other thing I learned quick. Babble’s never good. No one wants to read babble.) But I digress. Case in point, staying on point!
My take-away here? Deadlines are tough, but they do give structure. Without ‘em my blog posts are just “a blowing in the wind” like my mini skirt; just a tad too short. There’s always something else more important, like taking out the garbage or walking the dog. And much as I want to write that next blog post, it can get kicked to the trash without much doing. And that can could get kicked down the street and onto the next block easy, unless I get tough on myself.
I’ve found guest-blogging’s actually easier. At least that way I’ve got some accountability. May not be the fear of failing finals anymore, but it’s more than that now. It’s the fear of failing at this writing thing and having to barista forever that keeps me up nights. So here it is. Me getting tough. And with just a smidge under 24 hours over the mark!
And here’s to all the Writers Who Kill for rolling the dice and still putting me up!
Cheers all and stay tough!
Lisa’s a recent MFA graduate from California State University, Long Beach. Her writing slants dark towards the Noir and crime fiction, channeling inspiration from greats like Jim Thompson, Paul D. Marks and Paul Brazill. She’s been featured on PulpMetal Magazine, Flash Fiction Offensive, Near to the Knuckle, Asheditcom, NoWastedInk, and other places. And her short story “Tick-Tock” will be featured in the upcoming 2019 Sisters in Crime L.A., Fatally Haunted Anthology.
Lisa Blogs here: Ciarfella’s Fiction Corner; https://www.writingfictionnow.com
Ciao for now,