How to set a realistic deadline/goal for Red Reign?

See, as I glance over the internet, searching for help and guidance for writing fiction with ADHD, I’ve seen a few times that setting a timer and/or deadline/goal is crucial.

I don’t have a deadline, but I do have a timer that I barely use.
So, for a deadline to look forward too, I need to set one that actually makes sense for me.

The only one that came to mind is setting a deadline for this year. I will work on Red Reign till December 12 (my birthday). After my birthday, I shall take a long enough break to relax and clear my mind.

It sounds crazy, but I think having a clear goal and something to look forward to writing wise is highly important.

I just need to stick with it and take breaks when I am deep in writing.

Thoughts and feelings?


Truthfully, I wouldn’t say a deadline is crucial when it comes to finishing a first draft, especially if it’s not being published any time soon. They become crucial when it comes to publishing, specifically in the traditional world, because everything has a time limit. Seriously, because some publishers will even cancel your publication if you keep asking for an extension… :grimacing: Others won’t mind one or two extensions, especially if you get along with them well, but this isn’t always the case.

But for any other reason, you don’t need them. However, they are perfect for keeping you in check because if you tell yourself that it can wait or whatnot, then it’ll take ages to finish it. For some, this could mean four years until the first draft is finished. For others, it could mean ten or twenty years. Personally, I’m a massive procrastinator, and usually when I work on my story, it’s for an hour or two, and I usually work on it during my weekends. But this doesn’t mean I work on it every weekend, or for those time limits. Sometimes, I may write for three hours. Other times, it’s for five minutes. Depends on my mood. And sometimes, I skip days and weeks. There were times when I wouldn’t even look at it for a month because I was busy or tired. So, if you add up all this procrastination and minimal times I’ve worked on it, I finished the first draft in three years… which is longer than my average timing (a year and four months).

So, when it comes to deadlines, you can use it as a guideline to help keep you on track of how long it’d take to write it, but unless you really want to, you shouldn’t use it as a restrictive thing because otherwise, it may not help at all.

But if you do want a deadline, I’d say to choose a certain month or perhaps season as a good placement, with December 12th as your main goal… Like say, your main goal is December 12th, but you hope to finish it by early or mid-winter (which can mean any time between December and January). That way if you don’t get to the goal by December 12th, you at least have another month or so to get to the finish line. :wink:

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I’m not a published author.
I am just so tired of not getting things done writing wise. Like my ADHD has never been kind to me in that regard.

Some days are painful but easy enough other day which is most is hard as hell.

I just want to write and finish a novel with my ADHD getting in the way!

It is so aggravating because I just want to know what it is like to write till the bitter end.

I wish I didn’t have this problem and it wasn’t so difficult to try and do something on my own about it.

I love writing! I just wish it was a bit easier for me!

December 12 is a great end goal but you want to look out for losing steam. Unlike neurotypicals who are capable of… doing things simply because they want to do it, ADHDers don’t have that sort of inner motivation. Not in that way, at least. Wanting to isn’t (always) enough.

We need a lot of external motivation to keep us moving when the hyperfocus isn’t kicking in. If you want to use deadlines, I strongly suggest trying to break it up into a series of short deadlines. Again, December 12 is a great end goal, but smaller parts in between will help with feeling accomplished and like you’re actually getting something done.

And if you really want to, you can set small goals for yourself with the smaller deadlines. Like a word count you want to reach. Or setting a timer for how long you want to write a day. (But keep it short. 15 minutes of nonstop writing and then a 5-minute break, and you get to decide how long you want to do that).

I’d use the reward system as well! Reward yourself after you complete a writing goal. Whether that be reading a book you want to read, or watching a show you want to watch, etc. It can literally be anything so long as it’s something you like and something that makes you happy.

It depends entirely on how things work for you as well, though. See, I love trying new things and organizing stuff down to the detail, but using the same methods for too long tends to start feeling repetitive and boring, and the fun of it gets lost. So, unless it doesn’t bother you to do the same things, I’d try switching stuff up every once in a while. Make some deadlines shorter, break them up even more if you want to, etc.

Another thing I love using is a soft deadline and a hard deadline.

I struggle big time with self-discipline and tend not to complete something if I feel like I have to do it, so when I want to get something done I set a soft deadline. It basically is just the deadline I want to reach, but there’s no pressure to do so. I want to get something done by then, but if I don’t, it’s not a huge deal and I’m not going to be mad or upset at myself for not doing it.

But a hard deadline is basically a deadline I’m going to meet no matter what. I let the pressure guide me and push myself to just get it finished, even if it ends up being sloppy in the end. Since, you know, that’s the beauty of first drafts — they don’t have to be good. You can always go back and change it up or fix it if you need to. It just needs to be finished.


Anyone else?

Thanks so much for helping me.

I greatly appreciate that. So, the key is to set smaller more attainable goals for myself with writing and have not too long, but not too short writing sessions with breaks, correct?

I mean I still want to hold December 12 in mind, but you are right in the matter than I need to do something on a smaller scale than just working on it till December 12.

Thanks again and sorry for the late reply.

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I mean, I’m a week late to responding so… No need to apologize :sob:

But yes! Smaller more attainable goals can help so much with just feeling accomplished and not overwhelming yourself or adding too much pressure on your shoulders. I really hope it works out for you!!

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