There are a lot of find things to motivate a writer to write.
The desire to craft a wonderful story…
The fantasy of writing a million dollar spec script…
The realization of putting on paper the singular story your life has led you to tell.
And then there’s possibly the best motivator of all…
Or the threat thereof.
If you can orchestrate events so that the fear of being humiliated by not writing is greater than the fear of having people read what you do write, then you will be well on your way to getting your ass in chair and plowing ahead to FADE OUT.
So how to ensure this threat of humiliation?
Set a deadline.
Not just any deadline.
A public deadline!
Prepare an email in which you state your goal — “I am going to finish a draft of my long cherished screenplay ‘Leopard Lips'” — and most importantly, you select and include a due date. To up the stakes, you can add something like, “And if I don’t produce a draft of ‘Leopard Lips’ by [due date], I hereby proclaim you have the right to belittle my manhood / womanhood however you see fit by any electronic means including email, Twitter, Facebook, IM, SMS, BBM, or even archaic conveyances such as smoke signals or semaphores.”
Then take a deep breath, let out a guttural scream, and hit SEND.
Unless, of course, you write the draft.
And that’s the point.
You will be publicly humiliated by all your friends and family…
You’ve opened that door wiiiiiiiiiiiiiidddddddddeeeeee open.
The echoes of their laughter (and the exponential growth of the laughter once they spread your email to their friends and family members) will literally haunt you, getting in the way of any form of enjoyment until you…
FINISH YOUR DAMN SCRIPT!
So set a deadline.
Put into motion the visceral threat of abject and utter humiliation.
That is sure to see you from FADE IN to FADE OUT.
This has been another installment of Dumb Little Writing Tricks That Work.