Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Driving Focus Needs the Right Schedule

Spinning one’s wheels without forward movement is a true exercise in frustration. Putting more on one’s plate than can be eaten in a meal is gluttony. And writing without a plan of action is just plan insane.

We all know these truths. If we haven’t learned them within the first few experiences, we don’t deserve to call ourselves intelligent.

I bring all of this up to preface my new beginning. I’ve been stacking so much on my writer’s plate that even Hercules couldn’t have lifted it without a forklift. There are just so many marvelous projects that I must stick my fingers into right now. I know that I have four-ten other projects sitting in the wings looking for a finale. I understand that a new project needs extra time for development, which eliminates time slated for other work.

Yeah, I get it.

Addiction is a terrible thing. This addiction on mine to constantly find new, more fascinating projects to tinker with has got to stop. That’s why I’ve taken today to develop a work schedule for myself that is rigid enough to keep me focused and flexible enough to allow for movement between projects and chores outside of writing.

I’ve done scheduling before without success, I think because too much rigidity and I don’t get along well. We tend to go to war. Blame that on my need for flexibility.

With this new attempt, I’ve built in those non-writing tasks that always stole time I didn’t feel I had before. I built in time for email and social media twice a day. I built in time for reading for review and for pleasure. I built in specific timeframes for writing on different projects on different days of the week.

I even built in time each day for personal home tasks and half an hour of exercise. Believe me, that’s definitely new.

Each week’s schedule will shift just a bit as administration tasks are completed and others take their place. Now I can go to my day’s calendar and see just those things that need my focus, without having to think about those that will come on a different day.

Down the line further, I will build in all of the deadlines for submissions. I’ve already allowed for a few hours each week for marketing research and submissions.

I’m going to try, with determination and focus, to get this new attempt to work for me. Every other one has failed so far in the last two years. I’ve learned a bit about myself since then.

Wish me luck and check in on Monday to see how the work proceeds and how my newest project is coming along. What is that project, you ask. It’s a women’s fiction novel titled “Dreamie’s Box.” I’ve completed the first two chapters and moving forward.

Until next time,



  1. Good luck, Claudsy! How's it going so far?

  2. Thanks, Kate. So far, so good. At least I'm focused now so that I'm getting things done. I still have to get used to doing all of it, and I have to force myself to put everything into the daily schedule. I think I'm going to have to work harder to get that exercise session into the active column.

    I should have all the bugs worked out in a couple of weeks of activating the program. I even managed to get a piece of flash fiction done today in one shot; a piece of fantasy that I'll sub tomorrow or late tonight. I figure that's pretty good.