I've discovered that if I set a deadline to finish a book, then lo and behold, the book gets done. I set a very tight deadline for myself for the latest book. I started it on April 17 and I wanted it done by July 1.
Well, I didn't hit July 1. I hit July 7. But I was traveling for 2 weeks in there, and we had 2 trees land on our house during a tornado, so I was a bit distracted. I counted up my writing days, and it took me 62 days from start to finish.
I think deadlines are critical because otherwise it's way too easy to procrastinate, or wander while you're writing. If I have a firm deadline, I'll stay on task and keep my story in check. It's sort of amazing to me that after 7 years in this business, I'm still learning what works and what doesn't.
So on to the next deadline -- I haven't set it yet, but give me a week or so to relax, then I'll be itching to write again.
(summer book out just waiting to be read!)