I hate deadlines. I hate the stress of butting up against them. I hate that sometimes I'm not 100% in love with a piece that I publish. I hate that sometimes I feel I have to compromise on quality in order to get something finished in time.
I love deadlines. I love that they force me to focus. I love that I've come to treat them with near-religious devotion--I do not miss my deadlines. I love that they force me to move beyond my tendency toward perfectionism. I love discovering that I can say something worthwhile, even when it isn't perfect. I love learning to trust that I can say something worthwhile, even when it isn't perfect. (These are two different things.) And I love that they've shown me that what I feel about a piece at a given moment has little bearing on the ultimate quality of that piece.
I hate deadlines. I hate that the consistent pressure of meeting them has kept my work focused on what's immediately happening in my life rather than stretching out into work that's aimed to be more timeless.
I love deadlines. I love that working with them has given me the skills to turn around a quality piece in a short amount of time when it's necessary.
I love deadlines. I love that over the last year-and-a-half they've provided me with the structure to empower myself both as a writer and as a person. They've gotten me out of my comfort zone, gotten me taking risks to do work that I'm proud of. They've enabled me to trust myself in a way that I hadn't in a long, long time.
I hate deadlines. I hate the feeling of always being this close to missing one.
I love deadlines. But I'm tired of always being this close to missing one.