Posts Tagged ‘time management’

Making Sense of the “Hat Game”

In Writer Challenges on November 9, 2009 at 8:53 pm

One of the things I did recently to help mainstream my workload was organize my writing tasks.  In a previous post I discussed creating a business plan for your writing.  I took another look my my business plan and broke it down into my roles as a writer:

  • Author
  • Journalist
  • Blogger
  • Residual Queen
  • Mommy Writers Founder
  • Editor
  • Miscellaneous

I decided for me it’s most important that I work a little on my book and whatever queries or writing assignments I have at the moment every day. 

  • Sunday: put on “Author Hat” for 2hrs
  • Monday: put on “Journalist Hat” for 2hrs
  • Tuesday: put on “Blogger Hat” for 1hr, “Author Hat” for 30min, and “Journalist Hat” for 30min
  • etc….

How can you use this exercise in your writing career?  Examine your writing goals.  Maybe you only want to focus on writing books.  In your case you might break your workload down into marketing/promotion, writing the book, and working on your book proposal.  In this case it would be wise to spend time on the writing every day.  Perhaps 1hr on the book every day, 30min on the proposal and 30min on the marketing.


Social Media Madness

In Writer Challenges on November 7, 2009 at 8:27 pm

Some of my values readers may be wondering what’s been keeping me so busy that I haven’t been updating as regularly as I once did.  If you weren’t wondering…I’ll share what’s been keeping me so busy anyway.

Recently I’ve been focusing most of my attention on facilitating a free online writing class for women (which you can learn more about by clicking the “free classes” tab above or visiting Mommy Writers), and trying to build my platform – that inolves a lot of online networking with people who might be interested in  he topics I write about. 

For those who may be unfamilar with the term, “platform” refers to  all the ways you are visible to your audience.  The best definition I’ve found is in Christina Katz’s book Get known Before the Book Deal . 

The word platform simply describes all the ways you are visible and appealing to your future, potential, or actual readership.  Platform development is important not only for authors; it’s also crucial for aspiring and soon-to-be authors.  Your platform includes your Web presence, any public speaking you do, the classes you teach, the media contacts you’ve established, the articles you’ve published, and any other means you currently have for making your name and your future books known to a viable readership. 

Your platform communicates your expertise to others concisely, quickly, and decisively with clarity, confidence and ease.  How visible are you?  How much influence do you have?  How many people know and trust you?  If others recognize your expertise on a given topic or for a specific audience or both, then that is the measure of your platform success.”

If you’re like me you may be involved in so many online groups that it’s become difficult to keep up with them all.  Or worse – trying to keep up with them all you suddenly find your writing taking a back seat.  Writers’ groups are good, but only if they are not distracting you from the actual writing.

My solution?  I’ve decided not to try to check everything every day.  I made a list of all the online groups I’m involved in.  From there I decided which I needed to check and/or update daily.  I could only come up with one – Twitter.  Then I decided which I spend the most time on, and determined to never check more than one of those “time-eater” sites on any given day.  The rest was easy.  Check 4 sites per day, I allow myself to spend 20-30 mins on the “time-eater” site, and the rest I have to check in less than 20min.  With the time left over I can update my Twitter. 

On any given day I can spend between an hour and an hour and a half trolling the social media sites of the web – spreading the word about my writing, and learning fro other writers as well.

It may seem a little odd to make such a science of online groups and chatter, but anything that has the potential to absorb so much of your time is worth taking a closer look.