For one hour each week, I sweat my butt off to beat my best friend of some years in a game where winning means... well, very little. But I have an imposed timescale (one hour, every Monday) a goal (kick my friend's ass) and a driving force (my grit-yer-teeth stubborn refusal to lose at a game involving shuttlecocks). For the most part, this works. I may have a purpler (yes that's a word) face than my friend at the end of the game, but her ass is MINE for that week - figuratively - and the purple just makes my cake-eating grin stand out more.
What I've come to realise is that I have to apply these same factors to getting some writing done. In the past, this has occasionally happened - for example, where an agent has requested a revision. Your timescale is basically going to be ASAP-but-no-more-than-three-months-realistically, your goal is fixing any MS issues and working on the notes the agent has given you to woo them into making an offer, and your driving force is, of course, I WANT AN AGENT AND TO GET PUBLISHED AND SEE MY BOOKS ON BOOKSHELVES IN BOOKSHOPS... or something like that.
Because I haven't really had ALL those factors in play for the last few months (except with the revision I just mentioned), I haven't had that sense of urgency pushing me to work on my new WIP. Well, that's about to change. I want to have another MS ready to be pitched by the time I go on holiday in November, which really doesn't leave me much time for faffing about. I'm really, really good at faffing about.
So, writing the words makes it official: I will have a first draft of my new WIP ready by the end of September. It will be betad, edited and polished by the end of October. IT WILL BE DONE. You can kick my butt otherwise, and you know how I hate that. Especially if there are shuttlecocks involved.