Organization helps… don’t spread your writing too thin

I’m an enthusiast. I go full-steam ahead into what interests me. This is a good thing because I can work long hours, and I usually (eventually) finish everything. The down side, however, is that I often spread myself and my writing too thin.

My current circumstance might be a good example. I have one inactive and five active blogs. I am working on three books and I am a semi-busy freelance editor.  In addition, I’m a photographer and am taking art classes.  Why do I do all of this?  Because I love it. I have unbounded enthusiasm for these projects.

HOWEVER… (Weren’t you just expecting a big HOWEVER here?.  I mean I must have a point to telling you this and I must be intending to drive some point home.)

However, I know that I must be very careful to keep the quality of all these self-assigned tasks at a high enough level that quantity doesn’t surpass quality, and I must pace myself to a certain extent so I don’t burn out.

Just this week I have devised a plan for this… You are welcome to copy it and use it if you find it useful.

1. At the beginning of every week, I’ll make a list of what I want to accomplish in that week. It’s the master plan. I know I must keep  the list reasonable so I won’t frustrate myself.

2. Everyday, I’ll decide what I can reasonably accomplish in that day and what I will work on.  I will be as honest as I can be about what I think I can accomplish. Again, making a gigantic to do list will only drive me crazy.

3. I’ll use early morning hours to check blogs, write my blogs of the day and comment on others. That done, I won’t return to them until I have a break in my other work.

4. I’ll schedule work on my books and art around other events scheduled in my week. Now, I do have an advantage here. I don’t have a family to cook for everyday and I’m not running kids here and there. So, I can pretty much set my own schedule. I don’t work the traditional working hours of businesses. I may take a couple of hours to meet a friend for lunch. When I do, I’ll work in the evening if I want to finish an item on my list.

5. Midway through my workday, I’ll reassess my daily list and I’ll revise it if I feel it’s needed.

6. And, midway through my week, I’ll reassess my weekly list.

So, I’m off to start my experiment.  I’ll let you know how it goes.


About loubelcher

I'm a freelance artist and writer. I enjoy anything whimsical and my art and writing generally concentrate on the lighter side of life.
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1 Response to Organization helps… don’t spread your writing too thin

  1. Shakespeare says:

    I’m big on #3. The only thing I differ with is I keep a daily list–though weekends have a single list. And I write down EVERYTHING. If I don’t get something done, I just put it on the list for the next day. Sometimes I just put “Work on X, Y, or Z,” and as long as I spend a bit of time on it, I can check it off… and work on it a little more tomorrow.

    I’ve been doing the list thing for YEARS now. I’ve gone through an entire sketch pad (7-8 daily lists per page), and I’m about 2/3 through another. I just carry the notebook wherever I go. I know I’m at least twice as productive this way, and I’ve grown to love crossing items out when they are done.

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