Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Please Welcome Our Guest, Michelle Prima, Professional Organizer and Author of 101 Organizing Tips for Writers.
Michelle Prima is a Professional Organizer, specializing in author services, from file management to blog tour coordination. She is published in non-fiction, including her self-pubbed 101 Organizing Tips for Writers.
Two lucky commenters will win her booklet.
Buy Link: http://primabydesign.com/101writertips.htm
Follow her blog: http://theorganizedwriter.blogspot.com/
Today, she's offering tips on how to manage our time.
Time Management for Writers by Michelle Prima
If you're like most authors, writing isn't your full-time job. You might be employed outside the home. You might have young children at home. You might have a sick family member that takes up much of your time.
Whatever the situation, not many writers have the luxury of writing ten hours a day to crank out that manuscript. So it is important to know how to manage your time so you can make the best use of the minutes and hours you have every day.
First, set goals for yourself. These should include daily, weekly, monthly and annual goals. Write them down! They are more likely to come to fruition when written. Then prioritize them according to importance and deadlines. Looking at them on paper will give you a better idea of how to plan your time. For example, if you have a deadline in three months for a 400-page manuscript, divide the number of pages (400) by the number of days (90). You will need to write 4.4 pages every day to reach your goal. Always make goals realistic so you don't stress yourself out and get discouraged.
Second, keep track of all your activities in one place, whether it's an electronic calendar such as your smartphone, or an old-fashioned paper calendar. Record both personal and business tasks in this one calendar to avoid double-booking. Block out time for writing on your calendar. If you don't schedule it, you'll end up doing something else, and never get back to the writing.
Third, be proactive when it comes to meetings and appointments. Have contact information handy for the person running the meeting, and for all attendees if possible. Allow yourself plenty of time for driving to your appointments. Add on extra time when driving during heavier traffic or bad weather. Never schedule appointments back-to-back, even if they are in the same building. You never know when the first one might run late. Finally, call ahead to confirm date, time and place of the appointment. Too often, someone will think you meant one Starbuck's, when you are sitting at another. Or they write down the wrong date in their planner. It happens. So avoid wasted time by confirming with them.
Most important, learn to set boundaries for yourself. Say 'no' if you truly don't have the time or energy to help. Ask for help when you feel overwhelmed. And be firm that writing time is for writing only. Close the door and turn off your phone and email alerts. You'd be surprised how much time you waste just taking a peek at incoming mail.
Managing your time will give you more of it in the end. And who wouldn't like more time in a day?
What do you see as your biggest time waster? What can you do to improve on it?
Please welcome Michelle by leaving a comment. Remember, a free booklet will go to two lucky commenters.