But I don't think people do lie. People state their word count and if it's zero they blush, and twist their hair and contort their bodies and pull faces, just like toddlers being caught out. And the excuses! Sob stories, tales of woe, the occasional barefaced 'I didn't have time'. The rest of the class boos and throws cabbages at them. (But only metaphorically.)
But even though the boos are unheard and the cabbages are invisible, just the pressure of having to admit a zero word count to our peer group is enough to push people to write. There are quite a lot of confessions to the writing having been done the evening before, or even the morning of class - and I've even had a notebook waved filled with scribbles written as the student walked along the corridor, but hey - who cares? It's writing.
And writing is what it's about. Being proud of being a writer, and persisting with it until you get something written. You can always go back and edit later, but you need the raw material to start with. Set yourself a daily word target, proudly announce when you've achieved it and give yourself a reward. (Chocolate biscuits work for me which is why my bottom is the shape it is.)
So...how many words have you written this weekend?