by- Tom Kubrak
Without a plan, the average person get overwhelmed. It’s not very often you find someone who can go through life with little to nothing on the calendar and somehow break through to their writing dreams. But there are those rare exceptions of people. If you’re one of those exceptional human beings then feel free to discontinue reading anything I write about. If you’re similar to me though…please continue.
Going an entire week without anything planned out is a recipe for trouble for the writer who has so many things they have to write or want to write.
I’ve been there plenty of times and if it wasn’t for the hundreds of weeks I’ve went with little progress towards my other goals I would never have taken weekly planning as serious as I do now. The big problem I had with not planning out my weeks, in their entirety, is that I usually started working on projects I had no business working on at that particular time.
For example: when I had an article I needed to write for a magazine or website, I started working on a short story idea I had months ago. Not that working on a short story idea is a bad thing, but if I wanted to hit that deadline for that article I had to stop; but because I had never written it down that week, I found myself getting side-tracked.
Unfortunately, being an independent writer, I couldn’t afford wasting time any longer. I had to change and I had to change quick.
How To Do Your Weekly Planning
At the end of each week, when you finish all of your work, set some time aside to plan the next week. For example: if you finish your work Friday at 5 take a little break and plan from 6-7.
One hour is usually all it takes, but if you want to include a review session of the last week (which I suggest to better figure out the week ahead) add another 30-60 minutes to the planning session.
At the beginning of the week (Sunday or Monday) sit down for that same amount of time and plot out the week ahead. Use this time to put down one goal for each day of the week Mon-Friday(Saturday and Sunday, if you work it). The meetings and phone calls for the week is a huge priority but this planning session is for your work and goals for the projects your working on. Because ideally you would already have been in touch with those people/clients to have them on your calendar.
If you have the time even plot out what you need to read that week.
BONUS: Hire a Consultant
If you’re struggling to find the time or get motivated to do these planning sessions- HIRE A CONSULTANT. This can be a temporary fix or someone whom you continue to use in the future. Regardless, it’s a good way to start to get motivated. If you can’t afford one, ask someone if they’d be willing to trade time with you. This has worked wonders for me. Maybe it will for you too.
The bottom line…
Plan your week out, and experience the results yourself. If you’re already doing this.. Maybe try taking it up a notch and finding gaps in your schedule that need to be filled or changed. Also note that, as a writer, over planning can make you overwhelmed, so give yourself time to think and utilize these gaps in your schedule for a break, a phone call or something else.
A solid break can do wonders for the Writers mind to hop-back-in for another productive writing session.