I have a secret love.
Which, clearly, will not be so secret once I hit publish here, but I digress.
Although I am grateful to every technological genius that made being an author and all things related to a career as such in the twenty-first century just that much easier, I adore actual, physical writing. I love notebooks, especially of the cute and sparkly nature, and I have a special affinity for pens. All the colors, gel vs ink, and let’s not even discuss the glitter because it is just not the time or place for me to go to that level of squeeing.
This weekend I bought a new notebook. The quote on the cover spoke to me and inspired a thought: go back to the old system that has been proven to work.
See, I’ve tried various organizational apps and online to-do lists and each one has amazing features (including one particular one that has rewards for completed tasks which will one day become even more meaningful in my life), but there is nothing that can replace a written list for me. Both when it comes to accountability and satisfaction. Seriously, simply clicking a checkbox can not compare to crossing off an item. No offense to all the brilliant designers behind aforementioned programs.
As we all know, writing is hard. There isn’t a stage that is a walk in the park. Every step takes dedication, patience, and that weird mixture of hardened spirit and emotional vulnerability that only exists in the literary world. And it encompasses so much more than just putting words on a page. There is brand building, social media activity, querying, searching for the perfect agent/publisher, and a million other things. Each stage is important and requires attention.
So I am writing daily goals for myself. And yes I am writing them in sparkle pen. Don’t judge me.
If you are anything like me and struggle with the left-brained side of being an author and all the planning that comes along with it, play around until you find a method that works for you. By all means don’t give up if the first attempt to stay on task fails. If a web based to-do isn’t your cup of tea, try an app that will send alerts to your phone. If you swipe right to ignore because you can’t deal right that second and wind up forgetting about it (ask me how I know), then it’s time to switch it up. Keep your mind open to all possibilities to make it work for you, even going old school.
And whatever the question, glitter pens are always the answer.
The moral of the story, kiddos, is keep a list, stay on task, and be flexible enough to find a method that works best to achieve those objectives. Even if that means being the uncool kid who eschews modern technology.
The dream is a lot of work, but so, so worth it in the end.