Should Self-Published Authors Be Working on Deadlines 4

Should Self-Published Authors Be Working on Deadlines?

writers working on deadlinesI work well under pressure. One of the most exhilarating parts of being a self-published author is working on my own deadlines. Okay, maybe “exhilarating” is a bit of a stretch, but I must say I do enjoy the thrill of racing against the clock toward a goal.

Traditionally published authors are often working under several deadlines from their editor(s), agent, publisher, etc. often at the same time. I’m told at times it can be quite overwhelming and many pull the old familiar “all-nighter” in hopes of appeasing the powers that be.

Self-published authors don’t have that problem. Or do we?

Working on a deadline can be very beneficial to the self-published author in many ways.

Benefits of Working on Deadlines

1. Helps you to focus on the priority at hand

How often have you worked on a new book or a book proposal with no sense of urgency? Do you find yourself getting caught up on tasks of little to no importance? If you answered yes to those questions, working with a deadline looming overhead may be all you need to focus on the priorities at hand.

2. Keeps you accountable to your goals

Writing as a profession can sometimes be lonely. Working as a self-published author can really make you feel like an island in No Mans’s Land. Working on deadlines helps to keep you accountable to your goals. Simply making a checklist of things to do and giving yourself a specified time to get them done allows you to keep yourself accountable.


3. Gives you a sense of accomplishment

Let’s face it. We all like feeling like Superman or Wonderwoman from time to time. Receiving awards for a job well done is something most authors never get to experience. As you complete certain deadlines, the feelings of accomplishment are sure to follow.

4. Gets you prepared in case you publish traditionally

Should the self-published author choose to jump the fence to the “other world,” working on deadlines can help to prepare you for what’s to come with traditional publishers, agents, etc.

5. Helps you overcome procrastination

I don’t know about you, but I struggle with procrastination. Krissy Brady of Write It Sideways writes, “Take note of your typical procrastination triggers—the random things you turn to when avoiding your writing—and take care of them ahead of time. I call this ‘procrastinating in advance.'” Procrastination is the killer of every deadline.

As you focus your writing business on what you want, and when you want it to happen, you will notice that working on deadlines can be a real advantage for the self-published author. And maybe, just maybe you might find them to be exhilarating.

Like this post? Be sure to share and/or comment below to chime in with your own thoughts. 


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

4 thoughts on “Should Self-Published Authors Be Working on Deadlines

  • Jack Durish

    I am a perfectionist as well as a workaholic (which may leave you wondering how I survived to the age of 70). I have had the pleasure of working with many accomplished artists in various disciplines – art, photography, writing, performance, etc – and discovered kindred spirits (also perfectionists). It seems to be the only common denominator.

    The problem with perfection is that it can never be achieved. Thus, without a deadline, projects extend forever. Although I could always make “it” better, clients (and now my wife) protest that “it” is good enough and rip “it” from my hands.

    So, yes, self-published authors need deadlines and someone strong-willed enough to enforce them. Marry well…

    • Dana Che Post author

      You too huh? 🙂 You’re so right about the projects extending forever, that’s why I believe working on deadlines is crucial! Once you’ve done your best, roll with it or else it will be a never ending cycle of tweaks and changes. Thanks for your input.

  • Eliza

    What would you recommend for the amount of time for a deadline? Do traditionally published writers have a common amount of weeks they’re given to write the book? I wouldn’t know who much time to give myself to write it in. I have completely written one novel before and it took me about 7 months including outlining, writing, and editing. Is that a good time frame to follow for my next book?

    • Dana Che Post author

      I think the length of the deadline depends on your purpose and goals. My first book took 7 years to complete! Obviously, I wasn’t working on deadlines! However, after years of procrastination, I gave myself a deadline for the edits, finding proper photos, finding a cover artist, social media marketing, etc. Write down all your tasks and plan accordingly. Hope this helps!