HomeBlogWriting book is now very easy with our ultimate tactic
August 19, 2017
Writing book is now very easy with our ultimate tactic
Write these deadlines into your diary. For example, at the top of the diary page for 22nd February write in capitals – COMPLETED 50,000 WORD FIRST DRAFT. If you miss these deadlines you either need to become more productive, increase your writing time or extend your deadline.
Each activity is broken down into tasks which can then be scheduled into your identified writing slots. 50,000 words may become 100 tasks of 500 words. Each of these tasks requires a twenty-five minute writing slot (based on 40 hours required to write a first draft).
Of course, you can complete multiple tasks in one slot, eg, 1000 words in 50 minutes (2 tasks) or complete part of a task, 200 words in ten minutes. Note that usually you break down each activity into tasks after you have completed the previous activity because you may not know what you need to research until you have written your first draft. You now have a list of tasks that you can schedule over the coming weeks (see task and time management).
It is important to schedule the tasks and allocate no more than the time required because Parkinson’s Law states that a task expands to fill the time available to complete it. Give yourself three weeks to write 21,000 and, towards the end of three weeks, you may find you have only written 2000 words even if you sit down every writing session.
Give yourself one day with a half hour time slot to write 900 words and you will most likely achieve it. It is interesting that most people will not do a better job if they allocate more time to a task, they just become less productive. It is also interesting that many people when they have more time to write because they have reduced their hours at work, their children have become less dependent, or they have retired, still don’t become more prolific.
They produce no more in four hours than they previously did in one.
In the task and time management section of this book you will identify your writing slots and then schedule these tasks along with your productivity targets.
Record and review your progress
You are currently creating clear goals and projects. At a later point in time, as you work on your projects and complete tasks, it is useful to review your progress and achievements. This will enable you to identify any problems and make further improvements.
For example, you have created the task of writing 500 words in 25 minutes – note this is also a SMART target -1 will write 500 words, Specific and Measurable, in 25 minutes, Time- bound. You know that you can easily type 500 words in 25 minutes so this is Achievable and increasing your word count is Relevant to your goal of writing a book.
After the 25 minutes Record your word count in your diary. At a planned point in time undertake a Review of your progress against your targets. If you find you are easily exceeding your target then you might want to increase your target word count. If you are falling short of the target try to identify why. If you type slowly consider investing some time in learning to touch type or use voice to text software. Maybe when you sit down you don’t know what you are going to work on and spend time thinking through a scene or even deciding which scene to write, you therefore need to improve your outline.
Perhaps you were distracted, if this is the case try to find ways to reduce distractions. You may also need to revise the time allocated to each activity and then decide if you can identify additional writing slots or, as a last resort, revise your deadline date.
Over time you will not only make progress on your projects, you will also complete them. As part of your monthly review look at those projects that you have either completed or will be completed in the near future. If, as a result of completion, your project now has operational tasks you need to decide how much time to allocate to these tasks each week or month.
Carefully consider how much time is needed and how these tasks progress you towards your longer term goals. If you don’t manage this time you may find you are spending 50% of your writing time “tinkering” with your website or posting to social media and, as a result, missing the deadlines for other projects. You could, for example, restrict the time spent writing blog posts to twenty minutes a week and schedule this time only after you have completed your writing.
When you have completed a project you may decide to replace it with another goal from your list, remember no more than three projects at a time. As before define the goal as SMART and create a project with activities and tasks.
Repeat the review exercise every month to ensure you remain productive, continue to improve your productivity, and continue to make progress towards your goals. You cannot leave even your creative goals as an open-ended wish list hoping, or expecting, that you will get there in the end. Define your goals, create a project, set a deadline and identify the tasks. You can then schedule the tasks, get the project completed and achieve your goal.
Evaluate your project
At the end of each project you will want to evaluate your approach to the various activities and consider the impact of the project. This is particularly useful for projects that you will be repeating such as writing a book – you’ll probably want to write another. At a minimum you want to avoid repeating any mistakes you made, change something that isn’t working and stop doing tasks that have no benefit.