The Importance of A Writing Schedule

I’m a scheduler. I schedule everything. It’s been such an ingrained part of my daily life for so long, it’s hard not to. I know that might seem strange to many, but considering the last 30 years of my life, it’s understandable. When I decided to go full time with my writing career, I sat down and made a schedule. Currently, I have the months in which I’ll start writing the next five books scheduled as well as when each will be published and which specific books would be promoted when, over the next fifteen months. Some haven’t even been written yet.

“But, Wayne, I’m just not inspired to write today.”
Are you a writer? Then WRITE!

Create more manageable schedules.

Can we call these smaller chunks of the big schedule Books? My next book, I’m scheduled to start writing in three weeks and it will be published by early February during a huge promo for the first book in my series. I hope to gain 50,000 new readers with this promo and release. If only half of those go on to read the whole series, that’s 125,000 books sold next year, or almost half a million bucks! That means I have four months for me to come up with an idea, create an outline, write that crucial first sentence, finish the book, choose a cover photo, beta reading, editing, proof reading…. Well, you get the picture. Sounds daunting, huh?

“In four months?”
Are you a writer? Then WRITE!

Write 1,000 words per day

Four months is 120 days. Subtract 20 days for beta reading, editing and proof reading and during that time, work with the photographer and cover designer and get started with the submission process and formatting. That leaves 100 days to write a 100K word novel. That will require a minimum of 1,000 words written each day. They don’t have to be perfect. They just have to be there. A couple hundred extra words will give you a day off now and then to go to the kids’ ball games.

“How do you write 1,000 words a day?”
Are you a writer? Then WRITE!

This post is just over 1,000 words long and took less than an hour to write. A thousand words isn’t all that much. To a journalist, it’s a column and a half. Yeah, it’s just the meanderings of my mind about how I go about planning for success, but that’s the point. My books are just the meanderings of an over developed imagination. Aren’t yours? Just let the words pour out onto the page and arrange them later. I like to “bookmark” my writing at the end of each day. The next day, I go back two bookmark places, delete that bookmark and start reading, editing as I go. Since I’m going back two days every day, the whole manuscript is proofread by me twice when I get to those two words, “The End”. It also gets my head back into the game, picking up the storyline and pacing. Doesn’t matter if you’re a plotter or a pantser, getting your head back to where it was when you stopped the day before will give your story flow. My bookmarks are simple. When I stop, I skip a line, type in the number of words to that point and give it a style heading, so it appears in the TOC with the chapters. That way, I can just click on it and go to where I stopped two days ago.

Semper Fi,
Wayne

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