Monday 6 November 2023: The month ahead

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Okay, I’m a bit late with the ‘hello November’ thing, so I’ll just go straight in and do it. Proper catch up from tomorrow!

Hello November

I’ve been working hard over the past few days working out a schedule I’m more likely to stick to. Instead of cramming as many jobs into the diary as possible, I’m allocating everything, every single thing, just one hour. This means I’ve had to properly work backwards from deadline date for calls for submissions.

I’ve also tried to give each stage of every story at least a week to cool, but there are a few at the start of November that have been crammed in.

When I’m working on something solidly, I’ll use the Pomodoro timer and work for 50 minutes each hour and get up and do something different for 10 minutes each hour. For everything else, I’ll stop work on the hour and move onto the next job.

So, without further ado, here’s how I’m hoping November might pan out:

  • monthly schedule planning for November
  • new month wordcount & progress spreadsheets for November
  • NaNoWriMo
  • (week) daily blog post
  • weekly tech scan
  • weekly backup
  • weekly diary work
  • post the latest chapters of Diary of a Scaredy Cat to Substack every Monday
  • attend PF Writing Hour on X (formerly Twitter) every Tuesday
  • print off the naval book
  • edit the naval book
  • Monkey Dust admin every Monday
  • Diane’s gig list admin every Monday and Thursday
  • invoice client for the extra work for Vietnam book
  • finances for November
  • tax return
  • collect our eye prescriptions
  • see the asthma nurse again
  • take the dog to the vet twice
  • have my hair cut

Here are the working titles of the short stories I hope to be starting and/or finishing in November:

  • The Loch Ness Monster
  • If Walls Could Talk
  • Dragons & Heroes
  • Digital Love
  • Take Your Pick
  • The City of Glasgow
  • The Midnight Labyrinth
  • Across Time
  • Fallen

This does look like a lot, but two of them are stories already finished that just need tweaking before sending to market (The City of Glasgow and Take Your Pick), and five of them are only being started (from brainstorm through to 1st draft). That leaves two that have to be started and finished in November (Dragons & Heroes and Digital Love). With NaNo, though, the stories will take a back seat.

What does your November look like?

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3 thoughts on “Monday 6 November 2023: The month ahead

  1. November is about doing the work. I’m glad I’m not doing Nano this year; I would feel too pressured and scattered. I got out a book review over the weekend, and wrote some notes on ideas, but mostly gave myself the weekend off to do house and hearth stuff and go to an author talk.

    I find working backwards from deadline and alloting time works better for me than working forward and overcrowding my schedule, then feeling like I’m behind.


    1. Working backwards has always been something I’ve tried to strive towards. Watching you do it all the time has finally given me the impetus.

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