I’m a schedule-driven person. I need deadlines and organization. Without them, I’ll procrastinate indefinitely. But give me a deadline and I’ll move heaven and earth to meet it.
This year, however, has been chaotic (to put it mildly). Some business years are more challenging than others, and this was one of the more challenging. Because of a couple of unexpected life rolls, we made a lot of changes to some aspects of our business (the retail and teaching side of the business primarily), and I found it was impossible to maintain a schedule.
So, I did what any effective leader does, I adapted. I realized part way into the year that a rigid schedule wasn’t possible, and I would need to be very flexible with handling projects on the fly. The more people involved in a project (and some of our projects, like Fiction River, involve a lot of people), the harder that is, but thanks to our amazing staff, we managed.
The most difficult part of steering a ship through rough waters, as I’ve done this year, is time management. So, how do you manage when there literally is not enough time in the day?
It means knowing that you’ll get overwhelmed and being honest with yourself about how long you can continue working at that pace. It means controlling what you can and recognizing what you can’t but leaving room in the day/week/month for the unexpected. It means, if you’re a schedule-driven person, staying as organized as you can to keep your sanity.
It also means recognizing when you can’t do any more and speaking up.
Sometimes, effective time management means taking time off.
Kristine Kathryn Rusch wrote a wonderful piece called Time Management (it is part of her Freelancer’s Survival Guide as well as a standalone short book). I find it a handy book to help remind me of best practices during challenging times.
You can find it here.
Speaking of helpful books, don’t forget that there’s another Freelancer’s Survival Guide Short Book called The Secrets of Success in The 2018 NaNoWriMo Writing Tools Bundle on StoryBundle, which, along with 11 other informative books, is available until the last week in November for National Novel Writing Month.
You can learn more about that bundle here.
But hurry. Time is running out on this one.
And while you’re there, check out the new Valor: Military SF Storybundle. I’ll have more information about that one in next week’s Publisher’s Note.
Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.