Hello fellow March Madness-ers!

How are you doing on your goals? So far I’ve been super productive and I’ve hit my tasks exactly as scheduled. “Scheduled?” you ask. Well, more on that in a moment. But first I’d like to give away another prize from our huge prize arsenal today!


Today’s winner is…

Deana J. Holmes!

Congratulations, DeanaStop by our goal-setting post, and choose your prize from those still listed. Email Denise at d(at)denisejaden(dot)com with your choice and we’ll get it out to you as soon as possible.


And if you didn’t win, there are still LOTS of great prizes to be won, so keep checking in each day…

Now, I’d like to talk about goal setting. Specifically, setting small bite-sized goals that are not only realistic but achievable. In my day job as a Project Manager (in digital publishing), one of my main tasks is to create milestone schedules that break down large projects into smaller “deliverables.” This way, each person working on the project knows what they need to get done in a particular week. I usually divide projects into batches that each have their own due date, so if a smaller task falls behind, it’s okay as long as the batch due date remains the same.

I’ve started to apply this same scheduling philosophy to my writing and revisions and since then my productivity has greatly improved. This is an example of a schedule I’ve created to help me track revision tasks. This is a blank version:

Chapter # Task Name Type of Revision Duration Due Date
Batch 1 (Chapters #-#)
Due Date 03/##/14

Here is an example of how I’m using the schedule for my revision. I’ve made it generic so as to remove any details about the book, but basically I am turning a straight Contemporary novel into Magical Realism and adding a mystery element with clues and a search.

Chapter # Task Name Type of Revision Duration Due Date
Batch 1 (Chapters 1-5)
 1  Add in info about what Protagonist wants  Line edits  1 day  3/1/2014
 1  Add: Antagonist gives Protagonist a key  Line edits  1 day  3/1/2014
 2  Delete scene with brother  Delete scene  1 day  3/1/2014
 2  Protagonist finds the first clue  New Chapter  2 days  3/3/2014
 3  Remove info relating to Old Subplot  Line edits  1 day  3/4/2014
 4 After Protagonist gets to class, add in brief scene where she searches for Antagonist online. Love Interest catches her  Addition to scene 1 day 3/5/2014
 4 Reset location of date with Love Interest  Line edits 1 day 3/5/2014
 5 Protagonist and Love Interest find second clue.  New Chapter 2 days 3/7/2014
Due Date 03/07/14

I’m proud to say I’ve actually ahead of schedule at the moment. I’ve already completed all tasks for Batch 1, which gives me more buffer room in Batch 2.

And good news, March Madness-ers! I’m putting up a blank Excel version of this schedule (with an example tab) for you to download and use yourself!

The Excel version looks a little different:


It includes additional tabs to log new issues that need to be fixed in a 2nd revision pass. For example, in chapter 5 I realized I needed to change the timeline from a Wednesday night to a Friday night, so I wrote down “Fix timeline consistency in chapters 1-4″ to tackle in pass 2 so I can keep forward momentum of the revisions without constantly backtracking.

You can download the Revision_Schedule HERE!

Now how did you do today?

And don’t forget to stop by Denise’s blog for Thursday’s check in: http://denisejaden.blogspot.com

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