TIME MANAGEMENT FOR WRITERS
(Adapted from A Writer’s Time, by Kenneth Atchity)
No time is more important than the time spent examining your schedule and your time. Time planning doesn’t take much time, but it results in immense amounts of time saved, including time to waste when you feel the need for it.
It is important to schedule leisure time and time to do nothing: when you allow yourself that kind of time you don’t have to resent not having time to relax. And when you are in lesiure time, you’ll know you’re “supposed” to be relaxing, so you need not spend your free time worrying.
Begin by answering the question “Where does the time go?” Make an inventory of your time over the span of a week. Figure out where the hours go by making a list of activities in pencil and estimating the number of hours spent after each activity. Don’t worry about accuracy at this point.
Activity Hours Spent
Sleeping (no compomise on sleep–7 X 8 = 56 )
Phone/Email / Internet
Caring for others (kids, parents, sick friends)
Now go back and add up the hours, remembering that there are 168 hours in a week.
Next, recacluclate your list, still in pencil, being more honest this time. Once the list is as accurate as you can make it (leave out nonroutine events like vacations or sicknesses), add two columns to each item. In the first column, estimate how much you like this activity on a scale of one to five. In the second column, rate how much potential each activity has for enhancing your ability to “buy time”–ie. can you cut down on this activity?
Activity Time spent Like Time Barter
Revisit this exercise every few months, and see if it helps you manage time and particularly spend more time doing the things you want to do rather than what you think you have to do.