Tag Archives: productivity

Calendars for Productivity

Woman in a blue top holds a monthly calendar and the post title, "Calendars for Productivity" is superimposed on the top.

by Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig

Happy 2018!

I’m never much of a fan of resolutions, but I do like making sure at the beginning of each year that I’m organized.

With that in mind, here are the calendars that help me stay organized and on top of everything for the year.  Since a writer’s life intersects with their homelife, there are also calendars listed that help organize my personal life.  If both parts of my life are organized, there’s a hope of retaining writing life-personal life balance.

Production calendar for publishing

You don’t have to overthink this, and it can always be changed!  Plan what you want to accomplish for the year: one book?  More?  Then pencil in those dates on your calendar for completion.  Even better, get on your cover designer’s, freelance editor’s, and formatter’s calendars.  Now you have something to work toward.

My cover designer always designs a book ahead for me.  This ensures that I don’t run into any scheduling snags.  (I do have to write back cover copy for a book that I haven’t written yet.)

Editorial calendar for blog (I use OneNote)

I used to put my blog’s editorial calendar on my Google calendar, but I found it more difficult to see upcoming posts and to make date changes.  Now I use a page in OneNote (you could just as easily use Word).

Again, try not to overthink this.  This is simply a place where I can list ideas for posts and resources to write them (or at least a note as to where my mind was going when I came up with the idea in the first place).  I list all the dates that I blog and then put the ideas/blog titles beside them.  This way I never feel as if I’m at a loss for what to post. Continue reading Calendars for Productivity

How to Slow Time for More Relaxed, Creative Writing Sessions

A hand, holding a pen in its fist, rises out of a pile of paper.

by Colleen M. Story, @Colleen_M_Story

“Oh, I want to write today, but I just don’t have the time!”

You’ve probably felt this way more than once. In fact, if you’re like many of us in today’s world, you’re feeling frequently pressed for time, and like you just can’t find enough of it—especially for writing.

The bad news is that when you’re constantly under the gun, creativity suffers. In a 2002 study, researchers analyzed more than 9,000 daily diary entries from people who were working on projects that required high levels of creativity. They found that stress, in the form of time pressure, resulted in less creative projects.

“When creativity is under the gun,” the authors wrote, “it usually ends up getting killed.”

The good news is that you don’t have to feel this way. Here are five tips that can help you slow your perception of time so that when you do get a moment to write, you can approach it with a calm, relaxed state of mind. Continue reading How to Slow Time for More Relaxed, Creative Writing Sessions

Productivity and Intentional Free Time

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by Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig

I mentioned in April that I was trying a new approach to my free time.  I actually had very little free time and found that the little time I did have was quickly used up as I’d check emails and social media.

Even the longer breaks at the end of the day weren’t being maximized.  I’d be trying to remember what great book I’d heard about and look online for books until I fell asleep in the middle of searching.  Or I’d be aimlessly looking for something to watch on Netflix or PBS.org or Amazon Prime movies (we’ve mostly unplugged, so channel surfing doesn’t really happen anymore, but it’s still a long browsing process).

After reading a post by Emily Tjaden called “4 Reasons to Be Intentional With Your Free Time,” I decided to be more thoughtful about my approach to free time.  Whenever heard about an interesting title, I’d either buy/download it then, or I’d add it to my wish list on my account at the local library. Continue reading Productivity and Intentional Free Time

Productivity Tips for the Scattered Writer

By Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraigDeathtoStock_Wired1

I think of myself as a pretty productive writer.  But this winter has been the toughest ever for me in terms of being able to finish a project.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m behind on my current book.  And I never like to think of myself as behind…I start each day fresh with no catching up.

However, at this point, it’s time for this particular book to be finished with.  My freelance editor is waiting for it.  My beta reader is waiting for it.  I have been emailed several times about it by readers (I’d been smart this time and said ‘spring 2015’ to keep it vague.  Now they’re emailing to ask exactly what spring means). Continue reading Productivity Tips for the Scattered Writer

For Those Who Write Multiple Series

By Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraigIMG_20140105_175505_689

One thing about the holidays is that I’m always around people a lot more than I usually am.  In fact, I really can’t think of a time in the last couple of weeks when I was alone in the house.  I did really well, actually, keeping up with my modest writing goals, but part of me is glad that school is back in session today.

I definitely socialize more during the holidays than I do any other time of the year—and yes, it’s exhausting.  But it’s interesting, too.  I always get a different perspective when I’m talking with people I barely know about my writing. Continue reading For Those Who Write Multiple Series