Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Two time-management lessons I’ve learnt in recent weeks

For the past couple of weeks, i've learnt two time-management strategies that I want to share.

It's early days yet, but so far I've found them to be very useful. Takes away some of the stress from writing on daily deadlines.

1. Write a batch of blog posts to hold in reserve

This ensures you always have something to publish even when you’re under pressure from your other duties.

The same principle works for articles ( news/features/whatever), even if you write for a daily publication.

Every sector has some stories that are timeless, or fit a certain time of the year. Do them in advance, so you need only do news /current affairs stories on a shorter deadline.

2. Do at least one major chore per day

I used to set aside admin work or even major household chores for a designated day. I thought the system worked, but I was made to realize that the work gets done under incredible amounts of pressure, which takes a toll on me.

So for the past week I’ve made sure I do just that ONE thing. This included tidying up one bookshelf and ordering an additional bookshelf on Sunday, planting some vegetables on Monday and collecting mail packages (books mostly) from the post office today.

I learnt this strategy from the write to deadline course I took in February, facilitated by Paula Fray and Associates.

Speaking of training, I'm taking another writing course next week. The course is arranged by my employer and includes a one-on-one consultation /critique of participants' work by the trainer.


I will, of course, try to learn as much as I can from the process, but criticism stings no matter how constructive. I just have to keep reminding myself that it will help me improve my craft. How can I imrpove if I don't know where I'm going wrong?

Still on training, don't forget to register for the blogging workshop that I'm facilitating for the SCWBI on the 23 May.

I've already done the bulk of the research and recreated my powerpoint presentation, but there are still a few things that will need tweaking before the day arrives.

There's a lot to learn and to take home to implement, but I also hope that we'll have have fun too.

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