Since we’re going into the new year, I’ve been reviewing my planner systems. One thing that I’ve been seeing a lot of is people trying to find new ways to perfect their planning systems. In a lot of author communities I’ve also seen the need to get to see some author planners, so here is mine.
I didn’t get a special work planner until July of this year. To be honest, until I started Bullet Journaling last year, I never stuck with a planner for more than a few weeks. It never really clicked with me, but that’s a story for another time… The story today is about how and why I included the spreads that I did and how that will stay the same to change this year.
You’ve already seen pictures of my work planner before, when I talked about my Edge Marking system, it’s not my favourite colour, but since it’s the same colour as my Moleskine journal and I’ve been living with it for a while now, I’ve started to appreciate it (apart from when I pull the wrong notebook from my shelves…).
The photos will be of different qualities as I don’t want to share personal data, so I’m using pictures from my old phone for some spreads, but I also realised I forgot to take pictures of some of my other important spreads later on.
First, my TOC, I’ve made this all to my own specifications and will make my 2017 planner too.
- Hour logging (for administrative purposes)
- Kindle Unlimited dates
- Promotions and bookings
- Future log
- Quarterly logs
- Monthly logs
This gets me about halfway through the book, the other half of the book is all notes on things I need to take care of for the job. Keeping track of ideas for promotions, making sure I’ve got everything together for new releases, all things like that.
1. Hour logging
For this system I use the calendex layout, it’s a way to future log within the Bullet Journal system. The different columns are the months, the numbers at the side are the days of the months and the thick lines are the the start of a new week (where Sunday goes into Monday). This allows for lots of data to be stored in very little space.
I enjoy this system, it works well, even though I also track this digitally, I like having a paper copy too. I need to record my working hours for my government, so it’s good to have this accessible. I may actually half the size of the columns, which gives me some space on the side for important notes and dates. But other than that, it works well.
2. Kindle Unlimited Dates
The same system as the previous one, but this time with just the months going forward, as I didn’t need to backtrack anything. I used this system to keep an eye on when books came up for another round (90 days) of KDP Select, which allowed them to be in the Kindle Unlimited library. I used to write a shorthand for each book on the renewal date, so I could fit two books per line, which was enough. I won’t be using this spread again next year as I (and in some cases me and other authors) decided to pull all my books from the KDP Select system, in light of the recent mess from Amazon. Moving on.
All my books have one of these codes. For example, the Feathers and Microphones serial are F&M1, F&M2, etc. All series and books are noted this same way. I’m not that good with book titles, but I always remember the number of the book in a series, so for me, this works. It also makes it easier not to have to write Mated to the Alpha everytime I need to do something for that serial, just MttA.
3. Promotions and Bookings
Again the Calendex system, though I hadn’t fully finished it yet before i took the pictures (they’re now full of identifyable data, so I’m not retaking the pictures…). These spreads consist of three things, the first is a list of all the different promotion websites I regularly use, they also get a letter associated with them. Then, on the other pages I can put a dot on the date in the Calendex that I’ve got promotions on and write the promotions on the other side.
For example, a dot the 9th of August on the left side and then on the right side I’d list the day with the accompanying letters from the promotion websites, I often also have a page in my notes section where I also list the type of promotions I’ve used and things I need to do for them (like making promotion banners).
I may keep this, though it may fuse with a few of the other systems I’m changing, I’m not sure yet.
4. Future Log
I’d say this page is sort of self-explanatory. Per month I list the story I’m working on writing, editing, publishing and marketing. Usually the marketing and the publishing are the same, but sometimes I’ve got a few more things in marketing too.
I’m not always that good at keeping to these plans, but they do give me a better overview on what is going on in my life.
5. Quarterly logs
This is one that I designed myself. Each page has three months on them, split into months and weeks (4-4-5 weeks per month). Here I can drill a little more in what needs to be happening per project and I can spread out my monthly plans into weekly tasks. Previouly it had three weekly columns: week dates, writing and editing. But in this version I had to be real with myself and realise that I don’t actually do a lot of editing and writing in the same weeks, so I just created a “tasks” column instead.
6. Montly logs
These are based on the quarterlies, and while they look pretty nice, it just wasn’t working for me. I’ll probably be using a square one or two page calendar with a “tasks” column at the side of it to actually make this next year.
The weeklies are literally a line at the top of the page and the week number on it. I didn’t really have any real ideas on how to use them, so they regularly changed, and were often totally forgotten in favour of just my regular bujo notebook.
With my search for a new planner for next year, I’ve been having to rethink my system. There are things that I now store in my weekly that I won’t be able to put in there anymore, no matter the system and the same goes for some monthly spreads. So quite a few changes will depend on the planner book I’m choosing for next year. I can (and have the space to) move a lot of things to my daily spreads, but that still means I’ll have to adjust parts of my other systems (sorry, vague-blogging, I’ll share some pictures of the spreads I mean at another date, that would literally make another one of these posts), as I don’t want to have to take two planners (work and regular) with me, on top of always having my creative notebook with me. So decisions have to be made, systems adjusted…
Did you see anything new? Had any ideas now you’ve seen the spreads? Share below!