Thank god for deadlines. I am not sure I would move from my natural inertia without them. It seems like an on-going dance of procrastinations, avoidances, evasions, all leading to the final drive to produce, sometimes at the very last minute. It is an uncomfortable, anxiety-filled existence. But there are a few saving graces.
At times I think my work has benefitted from the pressure keg I put myself in. It has helped me focus. It has unlocked creative blocks, letting the work pour forth. Some of my best paintings have emerged three days before a gallery show.
And, I am not totally without discipline. When there is no exterior-imposed deadline, I am in the habit of setting one for myself. Challenging myself with a new project, a new exploration.
‘Can I rewrite that picture book by the end of the month, and maybe start on the illustrations?’
‘I’m should write a full length screenplay this winter.’
‘I will set aside time this April to explore mark-making with rust and organics on cotton.’
‘I will finally finish that novel by the end of the year. Next year tops.’
Wishful thinking? Sometimes. Accountability, in spite of the occasional missteps? Always.