Friday 24 Feb 2023: Planning and writing

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

I didn’t do the writing prompts posts this week because I hadn’t done the leg work for July. So writing prompts for July should appear next week everywhere. It will be March next week, though, and some time during the month, writing prompts for August and September will appear. Then, finally, I’ll be up to date again.

Other jobs that need a boot up the backside include:

  • Catch the Rainbow
  • Diary of a Pussycat
  • Project Management for Writers: Gate 3 – How?

One of the faffy jobs I did on Wednesday that I forgot about when writing yesterday’s blog post was updating the Trello boards. I do like Trello. I used to like working to a T-card system and Trello is really like that. It doesn’t do a lot of things that ClickUp and Asana do, but I think I like the visualness of it.

I added all of the books that I published last year to a ‘my books’ board, then I duplicated the board, removed the longer material and the anthologies and left just the short stories, and turned it into a ‘medium & vocal’ board. My five ‘favourite’ or starred boards are:

  • ghostwriting
  • my books
  • netgalley
  • newsletter
  • medium & vocal

I have another five, but I’m not sure yet if I need them, but I’ll keep them. With a free account, I can only have ten boards per workspace. But I think I can have more than one workspace. Saying that, for Trello, I think ten is probably enough.

The reason I updated the ‘my books’ board was so that I can manage adding them to our legal deposit here in the UK. I’m set up now to submit epubs rather than send hard copies in the post, but I have a lot to catch up on. So I started with the first two project management books, which, by the way, seem to be flying off the virtual bookshelves at the moment.

I would have started them a week ago, but the legal deposit refused to recognise me as a user. I submitted a help ticket, and they responded with a suggestion, but that still didn’t work. Then I remembered that our legal deposit interface doesn’t like the Opera browser, and I use Opera. So I switched to Chrome, and it worked. Like a dream. So I added the two project management books for now, and then added all of the books to the ‘my books’ board on Trello with a new label and checklist item: legal deposit.

Yesterday, then, I supervised the dog in the garden as we haven’t had the holes in the hedge blocked up yet and he can easily get through them if he wants to. He’s a dachshund, so he can burrow for England. I also took the cat out on her harness because she was climbing the walls to be allowed out again. Er, no, kitty. You can wait until the holes are blocked up again too. I’ve already buttered her paws and the brief garden visit in her harness seems to have sated her for now.

Back at my desk, I updated the ghostwriting board on Trello and I wrote yesterday’s blog post. The email came in from the ghostwriting client confirming that they now had both Part 4 and the bonus short story. And an elderly lady called to see if the cat had come home yet. I told her that she had and she was really happy, but I had a chat with her too, which I think she appreciated.

I checked that my short story was up on the story website, and it was, but it had no comments yet. The site is a bit glitchy, but I’m getting used to it. I thought that might be Opera too, but it’s glitchy on Chrome as well. It works better on the mobile phone, so perhaps that’s what it’s designed for.

I’ve had a few requests to work via Reedsy, but I turned down two, one was cancelled, and the other client went with someone else. Last week I had another request, which I responded to, and this week she asked if she could send me the first 1,000 words to look at. So I said I would, and I sent her a quote for doing the work. It’s a teeny tiny job that I should be able to fit in, but that means it’s also a teeny tiny price. So I’ve asked for 50% up front as a goodwill gesture. I’ll lose most of it in fees in any case, but hopefully it will be a nice diversion.

Ideally I’d like to add Reedsy to the income octopus (who remembers him?). I like how we don’t get to pitch for a job along with dozens of others but that the client reads our profiles and selects up to five, I think, to contact. We have no idea who we’re up against or what the bidding range is, so I use the Reedsy recommended rates as a guide combined with my usual rates.

I had a query to do some ghostwriting last week, independent of any of the job sites but from someone who follows the blog and the Facebook page, and I gave him the going rate rather than the special discounted rate I charge ghostwriting client #1, who I usually start a new book for every eight or nine weeks. Needless to say, as an individual he couldn’t really afford it. But I think he found the exercise of use.

Because I nipped out on Wednesday to do some shopping, I missed a telephone consultation regarding the pancreatitis incident last year. I was a bit narked because when I checked the telephone consultation system, the only phone number I was able to put in was my mobile phone number. As far as I knew, they didn’t have the new house landline number. And yet, guess what… that is the number he tried, despite me having my mobile with me. So I called them up yesterday to check what number they have on the system and they do have the mobile number. Nevertheless, a new appointment has been made for May. That’s three months away so I’m presuming that means he isn’t worried.

My newsletter was due to go out yesterday, but I didn’t have the energy to think up some news to write in it that hasn’t already appeared on here. I’ll have another think about that today. I’ve set up a Trello board for this so that in future I can add snippets to it as I go through the month. But at the moment, the Trello board is empty.

Fed up of sitting in front of the computer, I grabbed the editing work, the short story brainstorming notebook and the plotting journal for The Fool and took them all into the comfort of the sitting room. We have a busy weekend coming up as it’s the poet’s birthday, so I don’t want to be working at all over the next two days.

I’ve had late start on top of late start this week and it needs to change. We need to have our evening meal earlier so that we go to bed earlier so that I can get up earlier and make the most of the day ahead. We were going to get started on that this week, but then the cat vanished and I got behind on the ghostwriting. So next week… that’s the intention. 

Have a fab weekend.

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