Productivity Progress Report: Week 1

How about that accountability? You seemed supportive of my scheduling, so I’m continuing the transparency by keeping you aware on my progress. Eventually, all this work may become so habitual that I don’t need to track it. But while I’m still hammering my life into a routine, I need to monitor what I’m accomplishing one day at a time.

And I’m pleased to say that last week went REALLY well. Almost perfectly!

Here’s the schedule again, for reference.

schedule

And here are my results…

THE GOOD

  • The Shadow of Saturn First Draft: Surpassed my word count goal by 1000 words! Admittedly, I’m cheating, because I’m mostly pulling prose from my first attempts of this novel. I have about 40,000 words to pull from, although a lot needs fleshing out and conversion from present to past tense. I think this is a good project though, because it allows me to build up the habit in February while still leaving time for other things.
  • Cover Design For Kindle:  I wish I could show off the cover for my upcoming Kindle short. I’m so proud of how it came out! But alas, I’m trying to keep my pen names under wraps. I probably should schedule more than 1 hour for cover design in the future though. Finding free images with no copyright restrictions, as well as fonts for all uses, is time consuming.
  • AusmAtari Retro YouTube Channel: Austin did some furniture shuffling upstairs and merged his video game studio with the guest room (which means his former studio is now open for me to set up a green screen and do motion capture. Whoo!) He troubleshooted his prior technical difficulties and we filmed two great Let’s Plays on Saturday afternoon.
  • Indie MoCap Newsletter: This is a time eater, but will hopefully entice people to join my mailing list once I get the website up. It’s basically a monthly list of deadlines for film/game/tech/animation festivals and grants. Mostly, it requires a lot of Googling and spreadsheets. But I’m about 1/4 of the way done, so I met my goal.
  • The Con Runner’s Handbook Outline: I brainstormed some ideas, which was all I wanted to accomplish this week.
  • Freelance Video and Writing: I attended a party on Saturday and got an offer to produce a music video! It’s for a friend, and I’ll do it for free just to have some good demo pieces with my new camera. Music videos are one of the most fun things to edit. I also got asked to cover a local art event, but it’s unfortunately too soon – I won’t have my camera yet. At least I still got her business card for the future. On the writing side, I read a lot of material in the Freelance Writer’s Den, introduced myself on their forum, and made a checklist of all the steps I need to accomplish before accepting paid clients.
  • Dead Air Webseries: On track to finish an episode by the end of the month.
  • Aether Motion Website: I designed a half-decent logo and settled on Squarespace as my website platform.

THE DECENT

  • Editing Paradisa: I was tired on Tuesday, and most of my efforts involved annotating my manuscript with beta feedback and planning out what I’ll do the next 8 Tuesdays. I anticipate this project taking 2-3 weeks longer than anticipated, but it could be worse.
  • Writing For Kindle: I wrote 2300 words of my first Kindle erotica yesterday. My goal was to start and finish it (6000 words). With enough practice, I think I will get there, but I’m not sure I’ll be able to launch this story until next Friday. But this was surprisingly fun to write. It was one of the more liberating writing experiences I’ve had in awhile, as I didn’t feel like overanalyzing every word or wondering “will this please an agent?” Lord only knows if the rest of them will come out this easily.
  • Animation: Chalk this up to technical difficulties. I intended to play with the Black Desert Character Creator, but that program took FOREVER to install and ate up my computer for most of Monday. Tonight, I hope to tinker with Source Filmmaker some and get back to modeling in 3Ds Max.
  • Side Hustles: I made a few bucks. I could be doing more. The survey opportunities weren’t great last week either, so it was a slight bust.
  • Indie MoCap Articles: My goal was five. I finished two and started on a third. The second article was research heavy, so it was more time consuming than I expected. Still, if I have 10 complete by the end of the month, I will still be on track.
  • Reading: I did finish an entire book during my technical difficulties with Black Desert Character Creator. It was Chris Kennedy’s Self Publishing For Profit. But I only made it 30 pages farther in Leona Wisoker’s Secret of The Sands. It’s a really good book, but I was plagued by multiple headaches and did not want to read before bed.

THE “WHOOPS, THAT SLIPPED THROUGH THE CRACKS”

  • Writing Submissions: I went through my archive and figured out where to submit  next. But I couldn’t rub together a half hour to send out anything. Part of me wonders if my pieces need revision first (I have received feedback on some).
  • Camera and Equipment Research: I have plenty of opportunities to do this. Which is one of the reasons I am tempted to procrastinate. Surely I can find a few minutes this week to figure out the top 3-5 cameras I’m interested in.
  • LLC Research: Hey, it doesn’t scream excitement. I did find broad information about LLCs during my freelance research.  But my goal was to find all of the required LLC paperwork for South Carolina and start filling it out.

So what are my hopes for this week? I’m going to a free screening of Eddie The Eagle on Wednesday, so that night may suffer. I may also check out Deadpool this weekend, but Fridays and Saturdays are pretty low duty. I am 1000 words ahead on Saturn, so I will use that free hour for something. And so long as I keep my health, I would love to finish Secret of the Sands and start reading The Man In The High Castle.

It would be great if I could finish my Kindle Short before Friday and actually publish it, but I may eat the lost week and just finish it next Sunday. That will give me more time to set up my Kindle author blog/site, social media, and Amazon Author Central page.

How’s your week been, Pressworld? What do you hope to accomplish? And do you have any advice about business, self publishing, or anything else you see above? Hit me up in the comments and I’d love to chat!

 

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14 thoughts on “Productivity Progress Report: Week 1

  1. I’m impressed by how much you do on your own. For example, cover design. It’s wonderful you have that technical and artistic know-how. Will save you lots of money! And it must give you an even greater pride in your work.

    • My mother is a graphic designer so I grew up playing with her academic licenses for Photoshop and such. I was also a fangirl, which certainly promotes a lot of practice with graphics! I used to design my own Heroes themed blog headers and avatars – that kinda thing.

      So I can hold my own as a graphic artist, but definitely couldn’t compare to a pro. I may outsource my cover design for other projects if I ever get stumped on them. While I have technical skills, I lack the marketing genius that seperates good graphic artists from great ones.

      My biggest nonwriting strength is actually nonlinear video editing. It was another skill honed in fandom, lol, but I honest to God love doing it and was bestowed a pretty good eye.

  2. I read through this and thought two thoughts. First, you’re so busy! Second, do you ever sleep? Seriously, your productivity level is great. I’m just over here sleeping my life away compared to you.

    • We’ll see how long I keep it up, lol. I AM the same person who literally lost their entire January to Fallout 4, so I’m just as capable of distraction as everyone else ^_^ Btw, you were probably the main person who inspired me to prioritize reading again. So you’ve contributed to this, in your own little way.

      Honestly, sleep is one of the most important things to me. I used to trade off sleep for productivity, but that ended up making me feel *really* awful and sick half the time. This is usually how my day works out, in case you’re wondering how it all adds up –

      6:45 – 4:00….Commute & Work
      4:00 – 5:00….Scheduled “before dinner” activity (sometimes a nap :P)
      5:00 – 5:30….Dinner (which my fiancé cooks for me, thank God)
      5:30 – 6:30….Write 1000 words
      6:30 – 9:30….3 hrs of whatever is scheduled
      9:30 – 10:00 ….Shower
      10:00 – 11:00….Read
      11:00….Sleep

      My Thursdays are a bit unrealistic, so I might have to rethink those. And Sundays I try to treat like a work-from-home day, so I will ideally block out 8 hours of work. Saturdays is basically my day off, though. It’s VERY important to take a day off, or else I will burn out quick. Because I’m basically a sloth….a very ambitious sloth, but still a sloth.

    • I leave my weekends pretty wide open, aside from reading and freelance stuff. This weekend is pretty slammed though, because it’s SEWE/Deadpool/Valentine’s Day and I already know Sunday will have lots of catching up to do. Maybe the weekend of the 20th?

      I’m researching LLCs and it’s a pretty straightforward process to get incorporated. The only thing I’m confused about is that South Carolina has no way to file a “doing business as” name….so does that mean I don’t have to file each of my DBAs, or is it something else? I also calculated what my anticipated taxes will be, and they don’t seem to bad….so long as I either net less than $9000 or significantly above $9000. Falling right on the tax bracket can cause a pretty big hit. As for graphics stuff, I might send my Aether Motion logo along. I’m not super happy with it – maybe you could do better?

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