Sunday, January 31, 2010

Preparing for the dash

As per my last blog post, I'm going to try getting the first draft of my next (currently untitled) book written in the month of February.

Well, let me be more precise. I know I probably won't get the whole first draft finished, but I do want to get a major portion of the job done.

As before embarking on any major project, I've already done some preparation. I've:

1. Written an outline. I have the synopsis, which I wrote to sell the book. A year ago. However, since then, I've also written a more complete outline on file cards.

2. Cleaned out my email inbox.

3. Organized my information for my income tax.

4. Finished/organized various other administrative/secretarial tasks.

5. Done as much laundry as I could (still some to be finished up today). I've done a little cooking and freezing, so meal prep will be shorter.

Today, I'll be rereading the synopsis and outline and thinking about the first scene - something I'll do before going on my walk, which is not just a good way to get some exercise and fresh air, but gives me a chance to just think.

There are a few other things that enable me to take a "dash" approach to the first draft:

Necessity. I need to get going on this book. The deadline is far enough away that I'm certainly not panicking, but I have to start soon, or I will be.

I have a cleaning lady who comes every two weeks and is worth every penny.

I have a relatively light social calendar this month, in part because I knew I had to get going on this book, so declined to take part in a few things that would take time and mental energy (the latter being even more valuable than time).

Now off to put in another load of laundry, reread the material I have and get out for a walk while the sun is shining.


Caroline Storer said...

Ohhh you sound so organised! I wish I was....sigh.... lol Caroline x

Anonymous said...

Margaret, laundry is NEVER finished. As soon as you get everything washed and put away (which is my problem- it doesn't always get put away), you have to take off what you wore that day, and you instanty have MORE laundry. Unless, of course, you decide to become a nudist. But even then you would still have sheets and towels to do.

My idea of meal planning is to take a bunch of stuff out of the freezer, stick it in the fridge, and then figure out what to do with it during the week. Of course, this does help me update my inventory book. At least once a month, I try to go through the pantry, cabinets and freezer and update everything, so I will know what I need, or more importantly, what I DON'T need.

Happy and productive writing,


Leona said...

Good luck with the new book. I can't wait :)

Laundry, it's never done, as previously stated. As far as your meal preps? Awesome job. I have done that in the past, especially when I sold tupperware and could get the containers I wanted for a decent price, but mostly, I'm in Rosemary's camp for meal prep. See what's in the freezer, pull stuff out and figure out what to do with it later :D

Happy writing :D

Margaret Moore said...

Yes, laundry is constant. However, I'm trying to limit it to the weekend, which is also when the electricity rates are cheaper here. And we're empty nesters, which makes a huge difference in the amount.

Rosemary - you have an inventory book?? Now *that's* organized! I rely on memory (so every so often I make a discovery that goes directly to the garbage).