A Production Schedule

Making the donutsPreviously on Betsy’s Blog…

Betsy has had several conversations with Harry, the mythical creature sent by the International Muse Council to guide her towards her dreams.  Harry happens to be a white gerbil with aspirations for a promotion.  Surprisingly, he’s also proving to be quite a bit of help. He has already helped Betsy identify the goal of her Quest – she wants to be an indie author.  Next, he helped her to identify her first step – she has to write.  But that’s a pretty self- explanatory first step, so how should she really get started?  Let’s join Betsy and Harry now as they sit together on a sprawling sectional sofa in Betsy’s brain to discuss the matter.

*Harry tries to get into a comfortable position*  Can you prop that pillow behind my back?  Thanks.  *Leans back with hind feet sprawled out in front of him.*  Now, what were we talking about?

A production schedule.  *Betsy frowns*  I don’t get it.  This is writing.  I’m a writer.  That’s freaking ART!  Why are you talking about a production schedule like I’m making…making…donuts!

Because you need a freaking schedule.  *Harry pulls a tiny remote control from a hidden pocket in his fur*  *Points it at the wall-screen and clicks* *A graph appears*  

Wait!  When did you get that big ass monitor?

Coupla days ago.  It’ll be on your next credit card statement.  ANYways, we have to talk about production schedules even though what you’re doing is all arty and crap.

Why?  *Betsy tries not to think about her credit card statement* So I want to be an indie author.  So I write.  Simple.

Well, yeah.  It’s simple if you only want to do it as a hobby.  Then who freaking cares if you ever get a book out, right?  It’s like your grandma crocheting another freaking afghan.  Who cares if she finishes?

Huh.  *Betsy thinks*  Okay, I think I understand.  You’re saying I should have a schedule.  Of production.

*Harry rolls his eyes*  Sheesh you’re a freaking genius.  Listen, you’re telling me you want whatever you do to be all about the writing, right?


But even so it doesn’t sound like you want this to be a hobby.  You want to take this writing gig seriously, right?

Right! *Betsy nods her head decisively*

So, what you really want to be is kinda an “authorpreneur”.  


*Harry shrugs* New buzzword.  It means you’re an author and an entrepreneur.  You want your writing to be a business.  Right?

*Betsy thinks*  Right.  I want to treat it as a business.  I want to take it seriously.

Then you need a schedule.  You need deadlines.  You need to make promises, and, more importantly, you need to keep them.

*Betsy crosses arms*  *Glares at chart*  I still don’t see what this has to do with art.  I should be able to write when I feel like it.

Bull pucky!  See the chart?  *Harry gestures towards the screen*  You need to keep writing and publishing if you want people to read your books.

Well, I KNOW that.

And how many books are you going to write if you don’t have deadlines?

*Betsy pouts*  I’ll write if I don’t have deadlines, Mr. Wisenheimer.

Riiiiiiight.  Pardon me for asking, but how many books have you finished since your book got published?

Shut up.

See?  Deadlines.  Schedules.  Goals.  

Oh, all right.

*Harry pulls his G-Pad computer tablet from another pocket and boots up*  Okay.  When do you think the revised first draft of the book you’re working on will be finished?

*Betsy squirms*  I wanted to have it finished today.

*Harry looks up at her and is suddenly wearing glasses* And is it finished today?

*Betsy squirms some more*  No.  I fell asleep!

Uh huh.  *Harry makes some notes*  A feeble excuse, but I know you have indeed been working on it.  *Looks at Betsy over glasses*  How about we shoot to have it finished by the end of next week?

*Betsy picks at the threads of the seat cushion*  Okay.

*Harry makes notes* And to the beta readers / proofreaders by the end of the month.

*Betsy goggles at him*  Are you insane?

*Harry frowns* Are you an authorpreneur?

I…I….*blows out breath*  Okay.

Good.  *Harry nods*  And I also want you to have the next book basically plotted out.  Preferably the next two books.

*Betsy thinks*  Okay, I understand.  I have to set a schedule of when I want to release these books.  I have to set deadlines for them.  And then I have do everything I can to meet these deadlines even though I’m the one who set them, right?

*Harry beams at her*  Perfect.

Because, *Betsy says slowly*  If I make deadlines and keep them, then it’s like I’m making promises to myself and my readers and keeping my promises.  It’s like I’m professional.  Like my writing is a business.

*Harry’s smile grows wider*  Right.

It’s like I’ll be taking actual, tangible steps towards making my dreams real.  Right?


*Betsy looks at chart*  *Looks at Harry*  So, production schedules and deadlines are good.

Very good.

And the rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain.

*Harry’s smile becomes a beam of sunlight and his fur glows a startling white*



To Be Continued…


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