Self-Published: Create A Production Schedule

Since publishing my first book and learning more about the self-publishing industry I learned how important it is to publish regularly. Especially in the Romance genre. Romance readers tend to binge read books and the faster you can release them the better. But even if you aren’t writing in romance it is important to keep putting books out into the world to make sure your readers aren’t forgetting about you. To maximize how many books I am writing a year I created a production schedule. A production schedule is a way to plan out how many novels you are going to write either for the year or within the next 6 months are so. When you are going to write them? When are you going to edit them? and when are you going to publish them? If you want to you can also plan out your budget during this time.  There are a few things you need to find out before you create your production schedule.

1.How fast can you write a first draft?

This is super important when creating a production schedule. If you aren’t sure how long it’s going to take you to finish a first draft how can you plan for editing and publication? For myself I usually plan  six weeks to write my first draft. I can usually get it done in a month but I always schedule a couple extra weeks more as a buffer. Find out how long you think your book will be and divide that by how many words you can write. Add a couple weeks as a buffer and there you go now you have a estimate for how long it will take.

2.How long will your book take to get edited?

Being self-published means finding your own editor and most good editors can be booked for months in advance. This was a surprised to me the first time. I reach out to my editor in April and she said she couldn’t get to my book until July! Welcome to the world of self-publishing. Make sure to reach out to your editors in advance and get a timeline of when they will be available to work on your book as well as schedule for your own self edits.

3.Plan for the unexpected

Give yourself plenty of time for unexpected things to come up. Most of us have full time jobs and/or families and you aren’t going to be able to stick to your schedule all the time so plan for this. Add a couple weeks for holidays and be realistic about when you are available to write.

Once you have all the information you need list out how many novels you want to write this year. You don’t have to have the titles for all of them. I usually just name my novels E-book 1, E-book 2, E-book…. Write what months you are going to draft, what months is the manuscript with your editor and when will you be able to publish it. So without further or do here’s a look at my general production schedule.

Production Schedule

*Subject to Change*

Ebook 2
Draft Finished and self edited= 9/30
Editing Process=December and January
Release Date= February 29th
Ebook 3
Start plotting and writing=October 1st
Draft Finished and Self Edited=November 30th
Editing= February and Match
Release Date: End of April
Ebook 4:
Start plotting and writing: December
Draft finished and self edited=End of January
Editing=April and May
Release: End of June
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The Importance Of a Writing Routine

I think everyone is aware writing a book takes a lot of time.  Even if you can push out a rough draft in a month it’s a long process to turn it into readable material that you can be proud of. That is why it is so important to me to have a writing routine. Everyone is busy and if you are looking for time to write a book you will never find it.

You have to schedule and create the time. You have to pencil it into your planner and make a commitment to stick with it. Now nobody is perfect and things come up. This often happens to me when I plan to write in the evenings. I’m 100% a morning writer. That’s when I have the most time and the most creativity. But honestly sometimes I get lazy and I tell myself I’m going to write in the afternoon when I get home from work. Usually after work 1001 things come up, I’m tired, I need to workout and I never have time to get back around to my writing. So the #1 lesson, if you plan time to write stick to it as much as possible.

Another great thing about have a writing routine is that you don’t have to worry about being inspired or motivated. Writing becomes a habit and you just do it. For example the first thing I do in the morning is start my coffee and then sit down at the table and open my laptop to write. I do this pretty much on autopilot because I’m barely conscious enough to make any real decisions. If I think too much about how I feel about writing that day i’m more likely to procrastinate. If I’m being honest I don’t always feel like writing but once I get started thats where I find my inspiration.

My challenge to you is to create a routine that makes it easy for you to start writing. Write it down either in your phone or calendar and set a reminder. Treat your writing time like a appointment that you can’t miss and try to stick to it.

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Writing a Book Is a Marathon

I heard this awhile back ago that writing a book is a marathon. It never really connected with me until I finished my final edits of Ruthless Queen. It took me a year to finish my first book Ruthless Queen. Most of that was because I wasn’t really serious about it for awhile. Now that Ruthless Queen is finished I understand what is meant when people say writing a book is a marathon. Writing is not a sprint. I’m not going to be able to sit down at a table and write thousands of words each day, read through it once and then BAM its published. In reality I work a full time job, I am terrible at editing my own work, and self-publishing is not a easy road. Even after I finished writing my book I then had to teach myself how to be successful at self-publishing. I had to learn how to market my book and learn about the genre. If you want to craft a good book that you can be proud to put your name on it, it takes time, it takes work and you have to push through days where you don’t want to work on your novel at all. Take your time and stop comparing yourself to other authors that are publishing a book a month. Some of the most successful authors only put out 1 to 2 books a year. It’s a long journey but it will be completely worth it when you get to the finish line.

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Ruthless Queen is now available on Amazon