I work best with a plan.
That’s true of writing a book, both in plotting and time management.
A book is a huge task. It’s hours out of your life. It’s 100,000-words beaten out of your fingers by little plastic keys. It’s 300 page bloodied with ink, crumpled and thrown at the wall in frustration. It is a piece of you carved out, thrown on a slab and stabbed a few times, just for good measure.
Or at least that’s what it feels like sometimes.
But a page is not an insurmountable task. A scene. 1000-words. Two hours.
Those are things that are easy to wrap your head around. Little goals. They make the world go round.
I’m lucky enough to have approximately 6 hours of my weekdays to devote to authorial work. But without an actual plan, those 6 hours might as well be 30 minutes. I’d love to say I’m an inherently focused individual, but that would be a lie. I’ll chase imaginary butterflies all day long if given the opportunity. So I plan. Because when I don’t, I wind up with missed deadlines and a whole pile of things that I didn’t really need to have done.
But plans, I’ve found, need to be flexible. A militant daily list of things is not they way I can best get myself to work.
It’s one of the reasons I make a list of things I need to do throughout the week and then decide what I’m going to be able to get done each day as it happens. That allows me to work on what my brain will let me, while still knocking the important things off my list.
I also only put the big things on my calendar well in advance. Things change on a small scale, but more often than not, those major things stay rooted like a body in cement shoes (how do you feed your fish?). I break down those big things one by one and then I worry about the little stuff on a monthly basis.