Wednesday, December 9, 2009

TIme Management


It's here. That dreaded time of year when there doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day. There are times when I feel as if I'm sprinting from the moment my feet hit the floor beside my bed until I tuck myself under my blankets at night. So much to do and so little time!

I admit I am not one of those people who have their Christmas shopping done by August. I'm just not. When it's August, it's summer and I'm thinking about going to the beach or on holiday or making jam. I'm not thinking about Christmas.

I'll even deny the ever-nearing date after I've turned the calendar to December. Come on, it's only the 1st or the 2nd! I've got plenty of time. Add to the mix that there are several December birthdays in my household (not to mention my grown daughter's birthday on the 20th) so my baking has to include birthday cakes. And presents. I believe December birthdays deserve just as much attention as birthdays in any other month.

So with the baking, the decorating and the shopping, when in the name of holy socks am I supposed to be finding time to write? I can't write in the middle of the night. I could, of course, but I tend to get cranky if not down right ornery if I have to exist on only a few hours of sleep. I'm not 22 anymore. On the other hand, I really want to get my WIP to the point of revisions. Really, really, really. And no, I can't write 5,000 words a day. I am not that gifted.

Who has tips for me so that I can still be holding onto my sanity when January comes around?

16 comments:

  1. It is a crazy time of year. Personally, I've had to give myself permission to not stress about writing and accept the fact that I will be far more productive after all the madness has come and gone. Good luck with the juggling!

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  2. I agree with Deb. December is not a month for a lot of productive writing, and it's better to write less often, but well, than to scribble just to say you wrote. My only time management tip, for what it's worth, is to keep all of the files for you novel on your laptop, if you have one, so that you can take your book with you wherever you go and write, even in five-minute blocks. I sometimes do that while I'm cooking dinner, actually.

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  3. I was going to suggest the same thing, Elspeth. Give yourself permission to allow the month of December, with all its celebrations, to take precedence over the writing. Come the New Year, you will find your focus again without the additional stress.
    Karen

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  4. Deb, Margot and Karen; What good advice! I shall try to give myself permission to worry about writing later. And I shall try to be content with writing in short bursts rather than long. Thank heavens I DO have a laptop!

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  5. I agree. Write the whole month off. Then, if you happen to actually sneak a few minutes of productive work into the schedule, you're ahead of the game.

    It's all in how you frame it.

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  6. Lots and lots of pop tarts.

    This is all I got, since your readers already dispensed with the good advice.

    :)

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  7. Alan; I have to frame it too?

    Elisa; LOL!!! I shall have to get some. Excellent advice!

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  8. Oooo! I like poptarts!

    December is nuts! I LOVE it, but it's nuts. I'm just glad if I'm in the right place at the right time and I've brought everything I'm supposed to. There's still lots of time to shop and bake. Isn't there...

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  9. Pick one thing to give up (such as reading blogs and leaving comments) for the rest of the month and then borrow that time for writing. I'm going to borrow my television-watching time during the rerun season instead of replacing the reruns with DVDs. I write better afternoon and evening anyway, so it should work.

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  10. Jemi; tick, tick, tick...

    Patricia; There's a good idea! I don't watch much television, but I do watch DVDs. Maybe I could replace that...

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  11. Um...no tips from me. The way I'm doing it means that my blood pressure is up really high, but it's all getting done. Can't recommend my way, I don't think...

    Elizabeth
    Mystery Writing is Murder

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  12. Please . . . if you find the answer, let me know. I'm right there with you. Five birthdays in December. Plus more in November and January. Plus Christmas. I'm seeing my tush when I go through a door.

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  13. Elizabeth SC; I KNEW you'd be fine. I'm sure everything is ready at your house and all the presents are wrapped.

    Carol; What a wonderful expression! FIVE birthdays in December???? I'll stick with my 3.

    Elizabeth B; Ever have the feeling it's a leaking lifeboat?

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  14. My problem is less all of the running around -since we do a VERY scaled down Xmas as compared to you North Americans BUT rather the noise level with everyone home from school. It took me two weeks to finish a chapter that would have normally taken 2 days. It is driving me insane. I NEED an Office!!!

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  15. If you’d like a tool for managing your time and projects, you can use this application inspired by David Allen’s GTD:

    http://www.Gtdagenda.com

    You can use it to manage and prioritize your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, schedules and a calendar.
    A mobile version is available too.

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