A bullet journal, or my version of it

I’ve needed something for a while to organize all the little tasks that are required for running your own publishing business. And as a self-published author, that’s what I’m doing.

So, I adopted my own form of the bullet journal at the beginning of the year. Nothing fancy, no colors, just a chart of tasks to do, events on the calendar and things that come in. Here’s a page where I was tracking all of that – day by day.

There were a couple of problems with this. Some days I had more big items and others I had a bunch of little. So sometimes I was running out of room. Then, I have several projects going on at a time (the prefixes of OLR, OLD, OLC, OLO, LC, KR – those are my categories of projects) and the tasks for each were haphazardly listed as I did them throughout the day.

So, I took some motivation from a fellow author (who has awesome bullet journals with bright colors and pictures and stickers – I aspire to be her someday), and I started organizing by tasks. So this past week, I used the left page for the first 3 days, and the right page for the remaining four, and I grouped the tasks by project. I put any calendar entries under “Miscellaneous” as a category. Here’s the result:

The problem with this is I had some tasks for each project on both sides of the page. And my calendar entries were kinda all over the place. And some of my project tasks NEEDED to be done on a certain date instead of just sometime during the time period. And my linearly-organized brain was having trouble with this.

So, I’m taking a new tact this coming week. Blocks for each project FOR THE ENTIRE WEEK down the left side, then space for each DATE on the right hand side. I’ve already plugged in my calendar events for the week and the major things I need to do for my projects. More things will obviously be added throughout the week, and I will “summarize” what I do for each project on the date blocks on the right. I need to show project on my writing or revisions and that’s what I think may work. So, here’s what my framework for the upcoming week looks like:

The check boxes are for when I need to track incremental progress toward a major project. I have two project with incremental goals this week, both revisions. But I will usually have one revision and one writing project a week, where I’ll track daily words for the writing project, and revised pages for the edits.

I’ll check back at the end of the week and see how I did.

I also do a monthly “goals check-in” at the end of each month, and I also set my goals for the following month. All of my goals track back to my annual goals which are listed at the beginning of my journal. It’s the end of the quarter this weekend, so I’ll also do an incremental check-in on my annual goals to see if I’ve made sufficient progress to-date towards them.

I may be tweaking my approach, but I am definitely liking the roadmap that my bullet journal is giving me.

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