The Importance of Scheduling

In the last 10 years, I can’t remember the last time I had nothing to do. But I can still remember distinctly being bored as a child. Just. So. Bored. Which is probably why I became the creative person I am today. When you’ve read all of the books, and the toys are no longer interesting, you can count yourself a king of infinite space as long as you have a good imagination (and no bad dreams, naturally). Granted, I didn’t have the internet back then, so maybe my childhood would have been less boring. But the entertainment of the internet isn’t why I always have something to do these days. I think I’m just in the habit of being productive.

I wasn’t always like this, of course, but when you plan an undertaking as substantial as reporting on the entertainment industry by yourself, having the drive and work ethic to get things done is part and parcel. But it’s also easy to get swallowed up by work and let important things fall by the wayside, like friends, family, romances, and other pursuits. Ironically, I wrote a blog post titled Beware the Barrenness of a Busy Life where I complained about how spending too much time with family, friends, and romances kept me from working. In any event, it was folly to think that if I just worked hard enough that my little fire could dry up the ocean of entertainment content. What I should have been doing was prioritizing.

I should have been scheduling.

It wasn’t until I really focused on my career in the corporate world that I started to schedule. It was one thing to have Hollywood deadlines pile up with the only consequence being an unhappy publicist if a deadline was missed. It was quite another thing to have projects become at risk at my day job. And the more capable I proved myself, the more responsibilities were given to me. Along with those came more time-eating meetings. Blocking out time to actually get work done became a necessity.

I’ll admit that I never liked scheduling my life (outside of my day job). But now that I’m raising Working Author from the dead, I can already feel how the site is starting to absorb all of my time. So I think I should set some rules here about when and what I write.

Sunday: I reserve this day for chores, time with family, and preparing for the upcoming work week. Beyond light maintenance, I’ll probably leave the site alone.

Monday: I’ll probably still be disgruntled that the weekend is over, so I’m thinking of only posting short news items on this day. Maybe an image gallery or a video as well.

Tuesday: One of the things that got me my readership to begin with was my blogging. I got away from that as the site grew and took on a professional focus. However, I’ve been feeling the need to just communicate with readers, and I think straight blogging is doing it for me. I’ll try to knock out a blog post every Tuesday.

Wednesday: The real impetus behind me finally sitting down and scheduling is the fact that I haven’t been making any time to write screenplays, which is the long-forgotten reason that I even started entertainment journalism in the first place! So I’m going to use this day to just focus on writing movies.

Thursday: I’m going to use this day for promotion. I’ll either be signing up for pitching sessions, coaching, or classes. I tried going through the backdoor and it didn’t work out. I guess it’s time to go through the front door and stand in line like everyone else.

Friday: Nothing. I don’t want to do anything. I just want to go home and screw around.

Saturday: I’m going to review something. I’ll probably try to catch a movie in the morning and turn it around that afternoon.

So there you go; that’ll be my weekly routine. I’ll be impressed if I can stick to this. And if I can, then I’ll be impressed if any of the content turns out good. I’ve always been able to write marketing copy whenever it was needed, because I think the goal of marketing copy is much more defined and, therefore, easier to hit. Writing creatively on demand is much harder and usually requires inspiration.

And inspiration is something you can’t schedule.