making up a schedule

I admit it, I’ve been gone lately far more than I have in the past. Things have been a little crazy.

I quit my job two weeks ago (and four days after that, they laid everyone off at the company), moved up to a more remote location. I was set then to write full-time, but the new house has needed a lot of work. Old, smelly carpets to tear out, popcorn ceilings to scrape off, walls to spackle, everything needs to be painted. I’ve also taken on an informal job designing a logo, business card, brochure, and website for one of my neighbors, in exchange for a huge, gorgeous wooden desk that’s soon to be the center of all writing-related activities (not to mention the crowning glory of my bedroom).

So, the short of it is, we’re not moved in yet, and we’ve got a metaphorical ton of work to do before carpets get in, much less furniture. It seems that I’m taking a longer break from my book after all. It has, however, emphasized something that I’ve been thinking about for writing full time. You need a schedule. You won’t make the time if you don’t think of this as a business.

Or, at least, I do.

So. Since November 1st is the day our short-term apartment lease runs out, as well as the first day of NaNoWriMo, I’ll be sticking to a schedule, most of which centers on writing.

Priorities:

  • Write ‘Blue Crystal’ (no side projects): 2,000 words a day. Estimated time… 4 hours?
  • House remodeling. I’m not stupid enough to think it’ll be over by then. 1 1/2 hours.
  • Spanish. Because I’m stubborn, and determined to learn it. 1/2 hour.
  • 3d, art, and design work (such as that commission I took on). 1 1/2 hour.
  • Exercise. I’m cranky if I don’t move at some point. 1/2 hour.

That’s eight hours. I figure that my house remodeling hour and a half will be replaced by my internet social networking time once work is done (it’s so much harder to keep up on now that I don’t have a boring desk job). So, with a bit of scheduling… my tentative schedule will look something like this:

09:00-09:30 – Exercise.
09:30-10:30 – Writing.
10:30-10:40 – Break.
10:40-11:30 – Writing.
11:30-12:00 – Spanish.
12:00-12:30 – Lunch.
12:30-02:00 – House remodeling/housework/blogging/networking.
02:00-02:10 – Break
02:10-04:00 – Writing.
04:00-05:30 – 3d, art, and design.

That’s a full eight hour day. If I don’t make my 2,000 words, then I get overtime. Too harsh? Too much to do? Anything I’m forgetting?

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6 thoughts on “making up a schedule

  1. I think it’s lovely and oh-so-impractical to only give an hour and a half to house remodeling. Everything I’ve ever done when it came to a house took at least three hours… sometimes I can take half an hour just to set/clean up!

    However, that’s just me. Maybe you’re just more efficient than me?

    I can’t believe your company laid everyone off! How does it feel like, knowing you’re going to be writing full time? There are days where that’s all I dream about.

  2. Actually, that’s about what I’m doing now, with the house remodeling. Since we’re not living in the house, all of the tools are already out. Since the flooring hasn’t even been installed yet, there really is nothing to set up, and clean up is limited to covering paintbrushes and rollers in tinfoil.

    As for writing full time… I’ll let you know when I get there. The moving stuff really has been taking up a lot of my time, and even mental energy.

  3. I recently went through the whole “house remodeling before move in” thing. It was alot of work and writing was certainly the last thing on my mind at the time. In the future, it doesn’t matter how much money I could save by doing it myself, I’m calling a professional to tile my floor. 😛

  4. Are you including the task of selling your writing/doing essential author marketing under the general heading of networking, or do you perhaps need to add that in separately? After all, consistently selling is the main difference between a professional writer and a dabbler like myself who doesn’t need the pressure.

    While I agree that a schedule is a useful thing with you being full time, I also suspect that life will do its best to jump up and down on it. So long as you end up putting the time in, you might have to ignore the detail a little.

  5. You know your own writing habits, so perhaps this won’t apply — but I know that when I need to get serious writing done, the first twenty or so minutes are spent immersing myself. If I stopped after an hour, I would be stopping in the midst of good flow. Anyway, you might think about getting a stop watch or some kind of time keeper, unless you’re spiffy at keeping yourself on schedule. good luck w/ the endeavor!

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