Friday, December 11, 2015

Friday's Links to Writing & Marketing Blog Posts

By: Emily Tjaden

Deadlines kinda suck, don’t they? (There’s a reason they aren’t called “alivelines”.) They can bring a lot of stress to your work and cause you to doubt yourself, but the good news is—they don’t have to be scary.

After blogging for a couple of years, I’ve grown accustomed to working with deadlines. Every week, I know I’ve got to write two articles; it’s just the way things are. And it’s not always easy. So today I want to share some productivity hacks I’ve learned to help you meet your next deadline.

Hack #1: Understand inspiration

Inspiration owes you nothing. I just want to say that up front, because it’s important to understand the nature of inspiration before you even think about getting to work. Last week, I talked about the secret of outstanding productivity, and that’s it.

You’ve got to accept the fact that inspiration isn’t some lost puppy that wanders up to you, begging to be adopted. It’s more like a wild unicorn tearing away in the opposite direction. You’ve got to chase it down.

Hack #2: Get organized

It’s hard to meet deadlines when you aren’t sure what you need to do, so get organized. Make a list of the things you need to accomplish and keep it in front of you. Clean your desk. Disorganization kills productivity and fosters procrastination.

Getting organized not only prepares you physically, but mentally as well. It allows you to declutter your mind, freeing it to focus on the tasks at hand.

Hack #3: Map out your goals

Having a plan can save you a lot of stress when you’re in the middle of pushing for a deadline. Whether it’s the outline for a novel or bullet points for a speech, you need a road map.

Set mile-markers for yourself along the way. When I work on a book, I like to do this in Google Calendar by setting word count goals each day. Your goals don’t have to big huge. In fact, small goals can be better, as they give you something to do right now instead of “sometime in the future”.

But, regardless of your method, you need to set goals.

Hack #4: Set the mood

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If you missed my writing & marketing tweets and retweets yesterday, here they are again:
Happy running and writing, Kathy

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