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Writer-Reminders

Jan 5, 2004 -- Write More in 2004 Plan... part 2 of 5
Volume 3, Issue 1

    
The weekly ezine with a road map for sidetracked writers.

"Be better writers today than we were yesterday."

Welcome to our subscribers (new and old)!

Thought for the Week -  
What will you accomplish in 2004?

The new year is here. What do you have planned? What will you accomplish this year?

At a minimum, my hope for you is that you will write more this year than last year. So take two minutes to make a quick assessment of what you wrote last year, and jot it on your calendar. This can be number of articles or number of words or chapters or number of writing clients.... whatever works for you.

Now we have a destination to make the journey this year more fun. Instead of just wandering around like nomads you have a target -- plan to stretch yourself just a bit beyond last year's number.

Now take that number and divide it by 10. What do you get? This is how much you need each month. Make a note on each month of your calendar. No, that's not a typo. Why did I say 10 instead of 12? Ten gives you a cushion and room to grow. If your life falls apart like mine did in 2003, you have a two-month cushion built into your calculation.

Now go back to your original number and divide it by 42. What did you get this time? This is what you need to write each week. (Yes, I gave you ten weeks off for vacation and more unexpected events. If you hit your target in just 42 weeks, by October 23, just think how much more you can get done in the last two months of the year.)

Now... we have our destination.... let's jump in our writer's RV and head out (my oldest is really into motor homes and RVs and loves to go camping so I hope this analogy works for you).


Don't Forget - Tuesday TeleSeminars!

Don't forget the Write More in 2004 TeleSeminar is tomorrow night. Solve your most challenging organizing dilemmas (participants can send in their top five questions to be answered). Find out more at Write More in 2004 .

Next Tuesday is the Publishing without Paper Teleseminar. If you've ever considered ebooks, this presentation will explain how to write and publish one, and what you need to do to sell more ebooks. 
Sign up today at Publishing without Paper.


Thanks for subscribing and spreading the word about OrganizedWriter.com! Writer-Reminders is in its third year -- thanks to you.

Let's Write More in 2004!

Best, 
Julie
julie@organizedwriter.com

    

P.S.  "This week, I had the pleasure of reading The Organized Writer and interviewing author Julie Hood. This is a book no writer should be without....
-- Michael Knowles, http://www.WriteThinking.net

Read more from our chat and his review....

or you can read more reviews or buy the ebook from Booklocker.com. 
  


In This Issue

==> Your Time Map
==> Your "WriteSpace"
==> Best Filing Solutions
    
Mon, Jan 5, 2004
Day Five - Your Time Map


I'm going to tell you a little secret. Today's assignment will make or break your success this year. If you can master the Time Map project and then implement it in your life, tweak it here and there as your life changes, I am absolutely positive you will write more this year.

How do I know this? Because I've tried it both ways. 

I've tried to write and manage my business without having a working time map in front of me, and I never got as much accomplished as I thought I would. During the years when my time map was accurate and fit the way my mind and body work the best, AND I actually implemented it, I was incredibly productive.

OK... so what is a Time Map? A time map is a grid of your time laid out in a week. Those of you who have my ebook can print the grid on page 54, and color code it as listed.

If you don't have the book, go buy it <grin>! You can create your own time grid with the times down the left and the days of the week across the top. 

You can also use Microsoft Outlook (not Outlook Express), the Palm Desktop if you have a PDA, or my favorite, Agendus for Windows at http://snipurl.com/3nck

Start filling in the blocks. What happens in your day? What's permanent and can't be moved? What's the best place to put the moveable items? I'll give you a few of mine:

5:00-9:00 Exercise, Shower, Breakfast, Make lunches, Start laundry, Check dinner, Meet bus
9:00-10:15 Answer email and 1 hour book time
11:30-12:00 Lunch
12:00-1:00 Cleaning
Sun 8-10:45 Church
Sun 1-3:00 Groceries
Fri afternoon Writer-Reminders draft

Two more tips... first, if you have a spouse or partner in your life, make a map with columns for both of you and then work out your two schedules together. My husband and I did this last fall, and you can read more about it at:
http://snipurl.com/3ncm

The last tip is to find the right balance of structure in your schedule. You need to be specific, but if you are too rigid you'll sabotage your success. My husband and I just reworked ours to find better time slots and make it a bit more flexible. Be willing to play with this project until you find the perfect fit.


Day Five Checklist:

___ 1. Create your Time Map and color code your time.
___ 2. What events must occur at a specific time?
___ 3. What events can move? What is the optimal time for you?
___ 4. Have you built in adequate structure and flexibility?
___ 5. How does your map match that of your spouse/partner?

Tue, Jan 6, 2004
Day Six - Goals? Who Me?

OK, we've got our writing goals from above, but what about the rest of your life? Karen Hoffman, the Idea Coach, told me about Mark Victor Hansen's Goal Rush Challenge where you come up with 101 Lifetime Goals. I put mine together this weekend... how fun! Check it out at http://snipurl.com/3lag

I highly recommend his Rich Results newsletter.

The best part about this exercise is you aren't setting goals you have to complete this year. These are goals for the rest of your life. 

I'm also spreading out my goals instead of trying to do everything January 1st. My writing goals are starting this month, but my exercise goals are for February. 

If you've got the ebook, Ctrl+N, page 55, to read about intention and rank the six areas of your life.

Day Six Checklist:
___ 1. Create your 101 Lifetime Goals.
___ 2. Pick up to 10 to focus on this year, and assign them to different months of the year.
___ 3. Put reminders in your email software or calendar, or use memotome.com to remind you each month what's most important.
___ 4. Read about intention and rank the six areas of your life.

 

Wed, Jan 7, 2004
Day Seven - The Power of Routines

Routines - yuck! Why is it I cringe at that word? I know
how much they help me, but it just sounds so boring! 
My routines, though, save my keister all the time. Forget
to pay the credit card bill? Not as long as I do my
monthly billing routine. Forget to back up my computer?
Not as long as I check my weekly routine (see below).

Starting today, pull together your routines into an
Activity List. Make a checklist for yourself.

If you've got the ebook, use Ctrl+N, page 62.  Fill out the Activity List Form.

Day Seven Checklist:
___ 1. Make your Activity List with the routines you need.
    
Thur, Jan 8, 2004
Day Eight - Your Writespace

This is such a fun day. We want to set up your own
"writespace," your creative haven that nurtures your
writing soul (and brings you money!).

Step 1: Quick! Clean off your desk.

Grab a big box or a laundry basket, and dump everything on
your desk into it. There, don't you feel better already
with all that free desk space? Actually, make sure you
flip through the papers, and determine if you have any
hidden tax returns, property tax receipts, or bills. THEN,
sweep it in the box.

Step 2: Sort!

When can you start organizing this stuff?

When you are on hold or as the computer boots or when you
are waiting on the printer, start sorting. Tomorrow, we
get your files in order so you will have a place for many 
of these papers.

Step 3: Jazz it Up!

What can you do to jazz up your writespace? Even a new picture or a new calendar will spruce it for you.

EBOOK: Day 8. Acrobat, Ctrl+N, p.65. Paper, p. 59.
Read about how to design your perfect workspace, the IRS
requirements for your workspace, what to do if you don't
have a desk, and ergonomics.

Day Eight Checklist:
__ 1. Clean off your desk, and start sorting.
__ 2. Improve your space with a new picture, photo or calendar.

Fri, Jan 9, 2004
Day Nine - What's in Those File Drawers?

Where are your papers? Sprawled all around you? Stuffed into a filing cabinet that doesn't even open correctly?

Make every inch of your filing space work well for you.

Use piles if they work best for you. A mail organizer like
http://snipurl.com/3ncx
(8 compartments) or
http://snipurl.com/3ncy (21 compartments)

can really save space while keeping your piles sorted. I love these sorters, and have them all over my house.

The desktop hanging file folder boxes are perfect for tracking your current paperwork, and the Get-A-Grip file holders are perfect for meeting with clients because you can hang them on the table, and your papers are easily accessible.

Desktop file folder box - http://snipurl.com/3nd6
Get-A-Grip file - http://snipurl.com/3nd3


One last tip is to stop printing and keep as much of the paper as you possibly can in files online. Create Word documents for each of your main categories, and keep your research in a file instead of one paper. Be sure to include the URL of web sites.

Set up your pre-made filing system for 2004. 

I can't explain the entire system (you'll need the ebook for
that) but here's a place to start:

Make Project folders and number them one through ten or one
through thirty if you have that many projects. Then,
instead of having to rename the folders each time you
create a new project, you can just reuse Project 1 or
Project 10, etc.

In the book, I also talk about how to survive if you prefer
piles instead of files.

Another option is to test the free trial of the
Kiplinger's Taming The Paper Tiger! software at
http://www.thepapertiger.com/

I've heard lots of positive feedback about this software.
Basically, you have a database of your documents online and
can quickly search by keyword for your papers. The files
are stored in numerical order. PROS: I love the idea of a
searchable database, and it is guaranteed to find your
papers in 5 seconds or less. CONS: I wasn't sure how I
would find my papers if the computer was off. You can
print reports though.

Pick the solution that works best for you.

Day Nine Checklist
____ 1. Assess your filing needs, and find the best solutions for your particular needs.
____ 2. Use the Hanging Folder Labels Form to create your new files (ebook, Ctrl+N, p. 68).
____ 3. Read about why its OK to pile instead of file.
____ 4. Learn the best way to file your receipts so you can find them back.

Sat, Jan 10, 2004
Day Ten - Your Computer - Time-Buster #2 Lost Files

Is your computer a time-buster or a time-saver? One of the
biggest time wasters is lost files. If you can't remember
where you stored the file, how much time do you spend
searching for it?

I used to always lose downloaded documents, but I learned a
little secret. After you have downloaded a file, use
Start> Documents in Internet Explorer, and the file should
be listed.

The Search Assistant is another wonderful Windows tool.
Use Start > Search... > For Files or Folders to locate lost
documents.

EBOOK: Day 10. Acrobat, Ctrl+N, p. 77. Paper, p. 71.
Read solutions for the other six computer time-busters.

Day Ten Checklist
____ 1. Practice using the search function to find lost files.
____ 2. Read the other six computer time-busters.
Sun, Jan 11, 2004
Day Eleven - Communicate on the Web

Email... do you love it or hate it? Does it eat away at
your writing time, or do you use it to maintain your
sanity? I bet it's a little of both.

It always amazes me how I can sit down to check my email
and two hours later I'm still surfing (and not writing!).

1. One of the best suggestions is to turn off the "You
have new mail" reminder. This sound is a bit like the
telephone ringing. We don't want to ignore it.

2. Another suggestion is to invest the time in setting up
folders and filters that automatically file your messages
for you.

3. Make sure you set the From: option in your email
program. This makes sure that if your email address is
"wrt268@earthlink.net" the receiver sees a message from
"Joe Writer" instead. This is a simple way to look a bit
more professional.

For those of you with the ebook, Ctrl+N, p.85. 
Learn how to manage your mailing lists, the best types of
folders to create, suggestions for deleting, and other tips
for keeping your sanity with email.

Day 11 Checklist
___ 1. Turn off "you have mail."
___ 2. Set up filters to sort your email.
___ 3. Send yourself a message, and make sure the From is adequate.
    

Stick with me.... so we can Write More in 2004! 

Julie

Continue with Day 12

Like Organized Writer.com?  You'll love the ebook..... 


"Julie, I love your book. I have read (or at least opened) more than a trunk load of books about writing over the years. Yours is the first I have seen that gives readers so much in one place. For me, the Master List and putting that together was more than worth the cost."

-- David Stoddard
Motivational writer, trainer and publisher of the
Terrific Life Concepts ezine.
http://djstoddard.net
PRINTABLE CHECKLIST 
Click HERE for a separate screen for printing.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
PRINTABLE CHECKLIST
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

DRAW daily (Declutter-Read-Assess-Write)
What is this? 

M T W T F S S
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ 1. Declutter (only 5 minutes)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ 2. Read (only 5 minutes)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ 3. Assess (30 seconds to 5 minutes)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ 4. Write (at least 5 minutes)


Weekly Checklist

For freelance writers: Use this weekly checklist to find, write and send a query every week of 2004!

Monday
__ Make notes on a new idea.


Tuesday: Accounting Day
__ Post your accounting records.
__ Pay bills.
__ Follow up on outstanding invoices and queries.


Wednesday
__ Find a new market using links below.


Thursday: Errand Day
__ Make copies.
__ Return books to library.
__ Make deposit at bank.


Friday
__ Finish query and submit.
__ Match your query to the market.


Saturday Weekly Review
__ How was this week?
__ What's up next week?
__ Review your Projects list in your planner and check the
status.
__ Jot the next action steps for your projects on next week's
calendar.
__ Backup your computer files.
__ Virus scan your computer.
__ Update windows software at http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com
__ Update Microsoft(R)  office software at http://office.microsoft.com/officeupdate/default.aspx


Sunday
__ Relax and enjoy!
__ Do something fun today!

JOB/MARKET LINKS 

Organized Writer's Guideline Database
Absolute Write's Market Archives
Writer's Weekly Jobs
Writing-World.com guidelines
Writing-World.com writers wanted
Funds for Writers - Jobs and Markets
Paying Markets List
Freelance Job Bank 
Writer's Write Writer's Guideline Directory
Writer's Digest - Market of the Day
Writer's Market.com (subscription only)

Writer Gazette Job Board 
Writer Gazette Call for Submissions
Sell Writing Online
Writer's Crossing

 

Thanks for visiting Writer-Reminders! If you have comments,
success stories, or suggestions, reply to this message or e-mail
me at :julie@writer-reminders.com

- Julie


Writer-Reminders.com: reminders for all writers who want
more time to write. http://Writer-Reminders.com

OrganizedWriter.com: tips and tools for your writing
business. http://OrganizedWriter.com
 


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2004 Calendar

The new 2004 Writer's Calendar is now available!  

It has inspirational quotes, my monthly routines, and places to record your monthly writing goals. 

Print it here and please telll your writing friends and discussion groups to help spread the word about OrganizedWriter.com.  Thanks!

  

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