Wednesday 25 January 2017

Top 3 Bullet Journal Layouts for Authors

This year I started my first bullet journal (or BuJo). For those who don’t know what a bullet journal is, you’ll want to check out this site to learn more. Essentially, it is a way to combine a diary with a journal and planner, all in one convenient book!

I love mine so far, and I am finding it particularly useful with regards to planning and monitoring for my writing and several other hobbies. To that end, during 2017 I plan to write a few posts (probably bi-monthly) focusing on spread ideas for particular groups. What better way to start than with authors?

So, as an intrepid author, what can bullet journal do for you? Here are my top three bullet journal spreads to help you manage your writing projects.

1) Works in Progress
In this two-page spread, I keep track of my works in progress. Now, if you only write one thing at a time, there’s probably no need, but if, like me, you often have several projects in different stages at the same time, it’s a great way to keep track of where you’re up to with each. Here I note title and genre info, due dates and word count limits (especially useful if you’re writing for an anthology call with a deadline), and the various draft stages.

2) Book Releases
Congratulations, the publisher has accepted your book. Now you can add it to this two-page spread for forthcoming releases. Here you’ll see I capture vital dates and then have a series of stages showing all the things I need to do/prepare before the release to make sure I don’t forget anything. If you are self-publishing you might need to add some additional steps such as getting your cover designed, formatting your book, uploading to distributors etc. You can choose tasks to suit your own needs and preferences.

3) Blog Tour Calendar

Finally it’s time to take your new book on tour. I have set up this one-page spread for my MM novella Wish You Were Here, which releases in a couple of weeks. I have organised my own blog tour to celebrate the release and here I have a note of which blogger is posting when. I will tick them off once the post is live and I’ve visited to respond to any comments. I currently have info on who is posting what (guest blog, excerpt etc.) in the spreadsheet I used for sign-ups. However, you could also make this spread a little larger and include such info here if you wanted to.

So, those are my top three ideas. Other information pertinent to your writing that you could consider including in your bullet journal would be royalty payments or a record of publication information. However, I prefer to maintain those in spreadsheets. That way I can use sums to keep track of profits/losses, and, with regards to the publication records, I can keep all releases across the years together. For anyone interested in those two documents, you can read a short post and download my free templates HERE.

Still need more inspiration? Why not use a page in your bullet journal to jot down story ideas, or plot out your next work. You could set up pages with character notes, or any information from your research if you are writing something with an historical or scientific focus. There are no rules with the bullet journal; you can make it work for you.

I hope you enjoyed these suggestions. I’ll be back in a couple of months with a post focusing on another area in which your bullet journal can be used. There are some awesome bullet journal ideas out there. Just such on Pinterest or Instagram and you’re sure to find plenty of inspiration.

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