Ink-Stained Scribe

Establishing a Schedule: Plan B

 Plan B: Wherein I don't completely and totally admit to the failure of Plan A. Just mostly.

In Plan A, I admitted that I am a binge writer--I tend to work best when I have a few hours of uninterrupted time to write, but I didn't feel that weekends were sufficient to complete the amount of work I wanted to do. I intended to combat this by forcing myself to write in the evenings with a timer, to remind myself that I was "on the clock".

I don't think I even started.

Let me introduce you to my eleven stages of failure:

1. Take on too many projects masquerading as fun
2. Become overwhelmed by number of self-imposed obligations and goals
3. Hack away at said obligations willy-nilly, accomplishing little
4. Drive self into caffeine-induced frenzy of frustrated self-abuse
5. Make lists
6. Drink
7. Ignore lists
8. Bitch on Facebook 
9. Get called out for bitching on Facebook
10. Sulk
11. Formulate new plan

Maybe that seems like a total failure of Plan A, but I don't see it that way. I actually can write in sprints sometimes--I used to squeeze it in on lunch breaks or between classes, on the train, waiting for students to show up--but those sprints are generally reserved for when I'm in the middle of a huge project, when my life itself is immersed in BOOK.

What Plan A proved to me is this: I already know how I write, and fighting it doesn't work for me.

My only other option was to work with the knowledge of my writing method. For writing, I work best in large chunks of time. Therefore, with rare exceptions, most of my significant production will be on weekends, which leaves me with weeknights, breaks at work, and lunch-breaks to do other things.

I am one of those self-imposed busy-people. I have a lot of projects I want to do and a hard time giving up once I've started. So, I made a list of the different projects I'm involved in, and the aspects of writing I could address in smaller chunks of time. One of the things I did was identify, out of all my projects, which things were long-term and which could be completed more quickly.

Voice Acting: I currently owe three people voicework, but once I finish, it will be done.

Editing: I have a short story and a novella waiting to be edited and polished. This will be a much shorter process than the larger-scale edit of my books.

Editing: I have a bit of cleanup for The Mark of Flight, and one chapter in particular that needs rewriting, but then it's ready for submission.

Editing is something I can drop in and out of at any time without really needing much of a break, so I've put that specific aspect of writing as something I will do during a few lunch breaks and evenings a week. On the rest of my lunch breaks and evenings, I've scheduled activities like going to the gym, editing podcasts, and working on critiques.

We'll see how I fare with this schedule change. I'll let you know if it works any better than Plan A.

What is your schedule like? Have you changed your schedule? What's worked for you and what hasn't?