Ten Ways to be more organized
Getting organized is vital, especially if writing is not your only job. These are only suggestions but they help me so why not give them a go?
1 Write down everything
How many times have you thought of something cool to add to your story but you’re out somewhere/already in bed or you’re working on something else? Then you wake up/get home or find time to get to your idea, only to find you’ve forgotten what the heck it was.
As a self-confessed list maker I know the value of having a pen and paper handy so you don’t interrupt the flow of what you’re working on. It can be just a short sentence or a few words, anything that jogs you’re memory. Of course you could also put it into your phone notes or even dictate a message to yourself, both handy ideas if you’re away from your desk.
Use a diary or planner to write down any deadlines.
2 Make Schedules and Deadlines
Thinking about the tasks you need to complete before rushing into them will make an enormous difference to your day. What are your goals for the year? You’ll need edits, covers, Beta readers and you’ll need a date for publishing. How about sending a newsletter?
What will you need to do to achieve them? You’ll need a doable word count per day/week and you’ll need to have chosen a cover designer and an editor and have a mailing list started.
Now work backwards to fit everything in, month by month, then week by week.
3 Don’t Procrastinate
The longer you wait to do something, the more difficult it will be to get it done in the timeframe you have allocated.
If you want your life to be less stressful and less demanding, it makes sense to push yourself to get things done as soon as possible and not leave it until it’s no longer achievable in the timeframe.
4 Keep everything in its place
Being organized means having systems in place and keeping them in order.
Make everything you write or want to use in some way for your craft easy to find by labelling files clearly and in an order that makes sense. There is nothing worse than being unable to locate a file you want to work on.
5 Keep your screen clean
Yes, you might like to give it a wipe from time to time, but that’s not what we mean. Allow yourself a little time each week to clean things up on your computer, but especially your home screen.
How’s your emails or other files looking? If you don’t need them delete now. If you do, then make a folder so that you can easily find them.
If you allow your inbox to get out of hand you will find yourself always behind and may miss something important.
6 Tidy that desk
Do you have enough room on your desk to work efficiently? If not then you need to clear it of anything unnecessary and keep it that way. When you stop work at the end of your session, take plates and cups etc. out of the room.
Have the bare necessities like pen and paper and see if you can do without much more.
7 Stay optimistic and be flexible
Being optimistic will help immensely when things don’t go according to plan. Sometimes stuff happens and you won’t get done what you had planned. There could be a power outage for example or you get sick or unplanned visitors.
Take a deep breath and have a back-up plan. You’ll be surprised at how much you can make up or do another way if you don’t through the toys out of the cot. Tomorrow is another day and your health is the most important thing.
8 Have 1 spreadsheet or work document with all your links
This will make your life so much easier. Put everything here that pertains to your books or social media and your website. When you want to advertise you can simply go to this and load all links from one place.
9 Know how you work best
What time of day works best for you to write? Are you a morning or evening person?
A great percentage of people work better in the morning, trailing off as the afternoon wears on. If that’s you, then tackle all the hard things you need to do as soon as you sit down.
What does it take to get your butt on the seat? If you prefer to do things a certain way then put the ability to do them into place. A happy writer is a prolific one.
10 Keep a list of your passwords in a safe place
Don’t spend valuable time looking for a password you’ve forgotten. Have 1 master list of passwords which you alone know the whereabouts of.
You can also keep them on a site of which there are several good ones.
Hope these help! Happy writing!