Writing is often like climbing a mountain. Think about the struggle to the summit of a difficult chapter. The joy of finishing a scene/chapter/edit. The odd down moments when things don't go right. Sometimes you need a little push via a place I call the motivation station.
What can be found in the motivation station? Anything you like. It's kind of a donkey trying to get to the carrot on a stick. In math terms:
G (Goal) + W (Want) x D (Do) = R (Reward)
But how do you figure out when to use this reward method? I'll have to admit I'm often (always) tempted to reward myself in random ways for very little. But I have a few levels:
Level 3: Food. There is nothing like finishing that tricky chapter before allowing yourself to and indulge in a cookie treat.
Level 2: Relaxation. This is when I'm taking a break. This is for the times your eyeballs are ready to explode. Watch a movie. Take a bath. Whatever you like to do to relax is golden here.
Level 1: New books/music. Now I know books are something to buy at anytime, but finishing a first draft/major revisions means a BIG reward. That reward, for me, is a book or a track off iTunes. This works in two ways:
1) I get inspiration from the music.
2) Reading helps with my own writing.
I love writing, but there's something fun about reaching the end of a stage with something to look forward to. A completed MS is a wonderful thing (and the achievement that comes with it), but I've learnt it's the little things can help push me that little bit further.
How about you? How do you reward yourself for a major writing achievement?