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Organizing Your Writing Life

I've been asked to write on this topic many times and I always resist because I don't have the answers! I actually did try to write something up last year on my FB page and let's just say, it was anything but thorough. The problem is, there are just so many problems we writers have, and so many ways to tackle those problems. I've been doing this professionally for nine years and I'm still always looking for a better way. But for many of us (myself included) organization can sometimes be a major deterrent to progression. We get stuck in it and can't find out way out.

So I'm picking up the gauntlet and committing myself to offering you some real, actionable tips that could make a difference in your life. I plan to update this post as new methods or thoughts occur to me, and I encourage you to try the ideas out to find what works for you. If I'm missing something from my list, let me know! I'll probably want to give it a try!

The first step is to identify the different areas or general topics that encompass our careers. For me, that's Production, Marketing and Finances.

*Note: As I was working on this post, I realized it was going to get long fast. So to make the information more palatable and accessible, I'm going to divide the information into these three main groups. Links at the beginning of this post, and at the end!

At the moment, I'm using a few different places to organize my work, which is a little frustrating, but I have my reasons, which I'll explain, so you can see if it appeals to you, too.

Scrivener: for Writing, Series Development and Story Research I'm a long-time Scrivener user and I love it. It has its drawbacks and its advantages (like everything else.) I'll admit that I've been a bit on the fence lately, as I've considered picking up the Save the Cat software and giving that a try for a while. But for now, Scrivener is what I know, so I'll talk about that.

Airtable: for Series Bibles and Content Calendars I'm new to Airtable (see? Always looking for the "best way" to do things!) and I'm fully on board for using it for series bibles—it has everything I was looking for/needed. I'm not so sure about using it for social media planning, but I'm giving it a try.

Google Drive: for Marketing and Finances I find that I need access to my sales spreadsheets and marketing materials quickly and I'm always online when I'm looking for those things. Either I'm importing data from my vendors, or I'm responding to requests for my media kit, and those are easily done while online.

iDrive Sync: for everything else My husband is a hacker, and he tells me enough horror stories it's a wonder I do anything at all online, but one thing that has rubbed off on me is...Do I really want Google to have access to all my intellectual property (IP)? It's kind of silly to say that, since I use Google for everything, but oh well.

iDrive is an online automatic backup which, given what I just said about Google makes no sense, but my husband approved it, so... :P I love their Sync feature, which allows you to sync certain files constantly backed up, even as you work on them. I can't tell you how many times I've lost something, and iDrive has saved me.

All right. Let's get to organizing our work, shall we? Click on the following links for more information:

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