Saturday, May 5, 2012

Time Management for Working, Writing, and Platform Development

Writing requires time management and social media (platform building) management and that schedule takes a little while to get right...and even then there is always something that alters the schedule a bit.  I sometimes still get a little overwhelmed.  I felt extremely overwhelmed when I first added platform building last fall on top of a full time job and writing my book.  I had Facebook, RedRoom, Twitter, Google+, and a few other sites I was trying to manage.   My commute to work is an hour each way, I am
the President of an Arts Counsel in my spare time, organize art and social events, have two grown sons and a husband at home, grandkids, camping trips and other events, and my writing.  That is a lot to time manage, but I have figured out what works for me.  That is the key; to find what works.  It took trial and error to figure it out.  "Well crap, that isn't working!" was a common statement until I found a grove.

I don't feel as overwhelmed anymore and I am thankful for all these opportunities and avenues I have to promote myself and my works.

I will share my management schedule with you...just as an example and is no way meant to say this is the ONLY way.  What works for me may not work for you.

Twitter is run only through my cell phone and through Tweetymail.  Blog posts and author website maintenance are done 2-3 times a week during my lunch hour.  I have an editorial calendar that keeps the maintenance of these sites from becoming a ‘pull something out of my hat’ event.

Monday - Friday
Get up at 5:00 (not all days, but I try)
Take the dogs out
Start up my laptop
Make coffee
Write until 6:45am
Leave for work at 7:30am

FB notifications come in to my desk computer via email - I answer via email, this only takes a moment.
Google+ runs in the background nearly all day, I check it for no more than 3 minutes at a time during my breaks.
During my lunch, check and/or post to FB, LinkedIn, RedRoom, and GoodReads, then write if I have time left.
Arrive home from work at 6:30pm
Water my veggie garden
Make dinner
Do dishes
Fall onto couch next to Hubby

Saturday – Sunday
Get up at 6:00am (this happens whether I want it to or not…someone told me it was part of getting old)
Take the dogs out
Start up my laptop
Make coffee
Write until Hubby comes down the hall from the bedroom.
Save my work, shut down computer, and enjoy the day with my family.

I try not to write when my Hubby is awake.  Why?  I feel (and this is just me talking here) it takes away from spending time showing and telling him and my kids that they are most important in my life.  I manage to write between 2,000 and 6,000 words a week with this schedule.  I don't feel overwhelmed and my online presence and platform continues to grow along with my manuscript.

I do carry a spiral notebook with me everywhere I go.  I will get story ideas or have a concept for a story in progress and I will write it down.  All my stories begin in the spiral notebook and I find it to be an extremely useful tool.  Handwritten, sloppy writing creating an expansion on the story outline, but not the complete story, that comes later when I type it into the computer.  Hard to explain, so let me show you instead.  Shown below is a picture of J.K. Rowling’s story outline for one of the Harry Potter books, written in a spiral notebook.

I told the Hubby last night.  Now that the book is nearly finished, I feel like I have rounded the last turn on the track, I am running for the yellow ribbon at the finish line as fast as I can, and I have competition on each flank.  He told me he understood how that feels and he said, “run Honey, RUN”.  He is always supportive of my writing and has always been my cheering squad.  I couldn’t ask for a better Hubby!!  (sniff, sniff, tear)

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Thanks for reading!

Brooke Ryter


  1. Oh my golly. I'm exhausted just reading this. 5:00 a.m. wakeup? Whew...

    Love the notebook idea. I do that too!

    So glad I popped by. I just discovered your blog on Lara's annotated blogroll this week. :)

    1. So glad you came by! The schedule can be exhausting...but I look forward to the weekends and spending time with the fam!