Living As An Aspiring Author: Time Management Is Key

Living As An Aspiring Author: Time Management Is Key

Time management is probably a skill listed on every college graduates resume in the last three decades. It’s something we all have to do but we’re all not necessarily good at. For writers (aspiring, traditionally published, self-published, etc), being mediocre at managing your time isn’t really an option. I think this skill is even more crucial when you’re self-publishing but I’m going to try to speak generally here.

Currently, I’m planning for my novel “The Pariah Child & the Ever-Giving Stone” to come out in the next five to six months. This deadline essentially means that I’m in crunch time! And what I’ve realized since entering crunch time is that I’m already so far behind where I need to be. I seriously had no clue how many steps behind I was and now I’m racing to catch up.

My social media interaction isn’t where it needs to be, so, I’ve been really pushing it. I’ve outlined optimal posting times for my different accounts and have started planning specific content that needs to be posted. Additionally, I plan on hosting a blog tour and Facebook release party as part of my publication process. Oh, how lovely it would be if these things could magically plan themselves but sadly I still haven’t received my Hogwarts letter, so, I’m stuck handling things the muggle way.

Now, like any aspiring author I have to eat! So, that means I need to work. A few weeks ago, I did a video on my YouTube channel about the different ways aspiring authors can earn money. Since returning from visiting friends across the pond, I’ve been putting these resources to work. Sometimes I’ve applied to eight or more jobs on the freelance website I use, several on Wyzant and I’m hoping to get another request on Rover soon, too.

The good news is that my work’s paying off. I’ve found two steady freelance jobs that don’t take up too much of my writing time. However, when you’re in crunch time, you don’t really have any extra time to give. Each day is another step in my marketing strategy. I’ve set up monthly goals for myself that I check on regularly to complete. I’m still working with betas and am prepping myself to make the necessary edits. I’m also working on my second work-in-progress “The Woman in the Tree” which I’m planning to complete with the Chance Challenge writing challenge. Oh, and did I mention the outline for “The Pariah Child & the Ever-Giving Stone” sequel needs to get done?

Yeah, it’s pretty much a crap show right now. A pretty, bookish crap show but still a crap show. 🙂

Through all of this, two things have been keeping me together: (1) Self-care. Gotta know when enough is enough and when it’s time to take a breather. (2) Time management –hence the title–because my type A personality needs order to get things done. I have found the beauty in Google calendar; I have been re-energized by my new white board. I can’t even remember what life was like before my smart phone was synced to all my calendars and “to-do” lists.

And thought I’d like to think I’ll be able to let time management fall to the wayside once “The Pariah Child & the Ever-Giving Stone” (#PCEGS) is published, I now realize this is a never-ending journey. Sure, I’ll have more time to relax between novels but as an author who wants to one day live off her writing, my mind, your mind, always has to be on the next steps. Readers need to stay excited about your work and that’s done through social media meaning we need to be active on said social media. We need to constantly build connections with bloggers, reviewers, and booktubers. We need to always be writing, planning, and marketing.

So, this crazy train never stops and it’s usually bumpy but damn isn’t it fun. 🙂

If you want to follow me as I take up the writing challenge #ChanceChallenge, make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram. 50,000 words in one month? Can I do it?

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