Sunday, June 29, 2008

Pacts, Compacts, and Agreements

What motivates you? What motivates you to write a novel, to lose weight, reach higher or go farther than you've ever done before?
For me, having someone hold me accountable is always the best motivation. Followed closely by having someone who is trying to accomplish the same thing I am at the same time. (A little competition, or is it that misery loves company?)
This past week I got motivation from two different sources. A friend and I are trying to lose weight. (I've lost 26 lbs so far, celebrate with me!) This friend and I encourage each other to eat smart, exercise more, and get healthier. She's doing great too!
I also entered into an agreement with my DCCP's (Dazzlingly Clever Crit Partners) to write 7K words per week for the month of July, a feat that, if I accomplish it, will bring me to the conclusion of my current WIP. We check in with each other every day, and we will submit for crit every 14 days. Hopefully, this will leave enough time to get the work critiqued and tweaked before September 21st.
So what motivates you? Do you need a support staff, or do you prefer to do it on your own?


  1. hey, congratulations on the weight loss. That's awesome!

    I think for me I need specific dates. I'm the type of person that hates to be late for anything. So, if I have a strict timeframe, I'm more motivated to get something done.

  2. For work related tasks, I need a specific deadline. If I have a "whenever", that's when the task will likely be done.

    For personal goals, like weight loss, it's helpful to have someone going through the same process who can encourage,and won't sabotage what you're trying to do. Misery loves company (-;

    Congrats on your loss!

  3. Congratulations on the weight loss. I know how hard that is to do. I'm also seriously changing my eating with the goal to lose weight and break some old food habits.
    For writing goals, I make self-imposed word counts and deadlines. I don't always make them, but my aching desire to be a good writer and published keep me going. I'm not in a regular crit group, and when I was, getting the words down was a fairly effective motivator, but it also gave me the excuse of being lazy and only producing the chapter for that session. Now, I have two critters who give good advice on an as-needed basis.
    Writing and losing weight are very similar when you think about it. Both of them require daily adherence to the plan with the ultimate goal to be the best that we can be. You make choices, sweat to the bone, and if you have a bad day, you lick your wounds and start over the next day.
    Keep up the good work, Erica.

  4. Deadlines and accountability! That's what gets me motivated.

    For writing, being in love with my characters and story gets me motivated too. If I'm struggling, it means either I have the wrong characters or the wrong story---or that I've been away from it for so long that I've forgotten why I started writing it in the first place.

  5. I adore deadlines. They truly do make the world go around. Of course, a swift kick in the seat from critters will also help ;)

  6. Oh, Erica, how wonderful! I'm so envious of your weight loss and your wonderful crit group. You all sure know how to motivate each other.

    I have to set goals and deadlines. That motivates me, but I have to say a good support group is essential. You have it!