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Would you use Beeminder to write?

  1. Yes, determination alone isn't enough.

  2. Nope, punishment doesn't incentivize me.

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  1. Mouthwash

    Mouthwash Senior Member

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    Would this help you write?

    Discussion in 'Software' started by Mouthwash, Oct 29, 2017.

    Beeminder is a motivational tool where you pledge money to stay on track toward a goal and if you go off track, you pay. It's now capable of tracking your word count in order to motivate you to write:

    "For the last National Novel Writing Month we announced our new official URLminder integration. Well it’s been several months now and that integration has come a long way. So we wanted to both tell you about how much better it is and also give a fully newbee-friendly guide to beeminding your writing.

    We’ll start at the very beginning. Beeminder helps you break a big, scary, far-off deadline — write a novel by the end of November, write a dissertation in four years, you name it — into a succession of daily deadlines. To make the daily deadlines meaningful, you risk money. You literally put in your credit card and agree to get charged any day that you fail to write enough. Beeminder makes a graph of your progress and bugs you incessantly if you’re about to derail on your goal. It’s all frighteningly motivating. Many books and dissertations have been finished because of Beeminder!

    Now for the automatic word count part. This works by you telling Beeminder a URL or list of URLs where your writing lives. This doesn’t mean your writing needs to be public! You just need to get a URL for it. We’ll explain exactly how to do that below, whether your document lives on your own computer or an online editor like Google Docs."
     
  2. EdFromNY

    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I'm not sure what is meant by "if you go off track, you pay", but I can't possibly imagine anyone producing quality work by putting pressure on themselves. Nor can I imagine anyone who aspires to publishing their work benefitting from this. Yes, it's true that professional writers often have to write under the pressure of a deadline, but they are already professionals. For an aspiring writer, the process of attaining professional status can be long and painful as one learns (usually the hard way) how and where to improve his/her writing. Manufacturing deadline pressure seems unlikely to help them along.

    More to the point, if one requires artificial motivation to write, it is highly unlikely they will ever attain publishable writing. That kind of motivation and determination has to come from within.

    This looks to me to be just one more attempt to separate aspiring writers from their money.
     
    Shenanigator likes this.
  3. izzybot

    izzybot Transhuman Autophage Contributor

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    Nope. I'm writing to try to make money, not potentially lose it. I work best when I use rewards as incentive, anyway.
     
    Shenanigator likes this.
  4. Shenanigator

    Shenanigator Has the Vocabulary of a Well-Educated Sailor. Contributor

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    No, pounding my head on the desk in frustration is plenty of punishment if need be.
     
    Laurin Kelly likes this.
  5. Laurin Kelly

    Laurin Kelly Contributor Contributor

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    This sounds like something that happens in my nightmares when I have writer's block. I'll take a super hard pass to the left on this one.
     
    Shenanigator likes this.
  6. Mouthwash

    Mouthwash Senior Member

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    You precommit a certain amount of money, which is only charged if you fail to meet your goals.

    Well, seems like the overwhelming consensus here is nay. Beeminder's probably more useful for forcing people not to do things (like overeating).
     
  7. IDontDrinkKoolaid

    IDontDrinkKoolaid Member

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    I think things like these are gimmicky at best, and stunt your personal development at worst. I assume this is meant to help you deal with the frustration of procrastination, instead of with writers block, but that would be a huge lost opportunity for introspection - finding the root of the issue, dealing with it, and growing in the process.

    Train your willpower, work on your philosophy, meditate on your obstacles, be happy, grow.

    It's like those lucid dreaming apps, I just can't stand them, even if they're made with good intentions in mind and not just a quick cashgrab aimed at millennials who can't put in 2 hours of work without being rewarded instantly after.
     
    EdFromNY likes this.

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