Well, my goals for April didn’t exactly pan out as I hoped they would. Mostly, it was because I had a few major issues to clean up for various clients. Needless to say, I didn’t get a lot of “me” time for the first couple of weeks.
However, I managed to keep things from getting out of hand and hope that May ends a bit more in my favor.
So, let’s take a look at what I wanted to do and where the cards had fallen.
Goals for April – An Epic Failure
I can’t really fault myself for the shortcomings this past month. After all, my client’s needs come first. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be able to pay my mortgage.
Still, it would have been nice to spend a bit more time with my projects.
Wasn’t Able to Wrap Up My Second Book
Because the first two weeks were spent with clients while the stress level was dialed to 11, I wasn’t able to get a lot of time into writing Kingmaker. Well, until the last couple of weeks, anyway.
The idea was to have the second draft ready for beta readers by the end of the month.
Unfortunately, too much of my time was tapped at the beginning of April. And I wasn’t able to really dive into the book as I wanted.
Breaking Monthly Word Count Record
One of my running goals is to continuously strive to break personal records for the number of words written in a month. As I was unable to get some solid time to myself throughout the first couple of weeks, I was nowhere near the word count record.
However, I did manage to break my time management record.
I track everything I do in a spreadsheet. Every minute and every word is recorded for various reasons. Most of all, it’s because I’m a dork and love spreadsheets way too much.
In any case, I broke my monthly average for time spent working on projects, which goes to show how much time I spent with client work in April.
Finishing VII on Wattpad
Part of why I haven’t finished VII yet is a mixture of a couple of things. First, I am completely rewriting a few of the stories in the “anthology” from scratch. The stories never really sat well with me when I wrote the original manuscript.
Secondly, I’ve been prioritizing Kingmaker over other creative projects. That’s because I want Kingmaker published before my birthday in July. Not to mention that I feel it’s a far better book, overall.
Sticking to a YouTube Video Schedule
This is perhaps the only goal I came relatively close to meeting in April. I want to get the channels back on a routine publishing schedule on YouTube.
Since I started this new project of building a new blog for my audience, I’ve been doing relatively well in getting videos up on Wednesday and Friday. And I almost forgot how much fun I find the entire process.
I wouldn’t say that it’s made a huge impact on watch time. In reality, I’m currently looking at monetizing in September 2027. But it’s still fun to make the videos.
More Marketing on Social Media
The only part of social media marketing I was able to sustain was setting up Pinterest for WriterSanctuary. It was something I wanted to try out, but it doesn’t look like it’s a good platform for writing.
I’m not discouraged as of yet. It’s only been a solid four weeks since creating the profile, which is really not enough time to collect actionable data.
This little experiment showed me that it takes less than 30 minutes to schedule three pins throughout the week. In fact, managing the account has given me quite a few ideas for other social platforms.
It snowed off and on throughout April, which makes it difficult to plant pumpkin seeds in frozen ground. That means I’ll start them the first week of May.
Regardless, I need to get the buggers going if I want to hand out pumpkins for Halloween. And yes, I’m growing mammoths again. I would love another 50-pound pumpkin to carve.
I find gardening quite relaxing and therapeutic. It’s one of those things that I spend a bit of time doing every day while enjoying the outdoors, getting some sun, and reaping the fruits of my labor.
On a side note, I’m super excited to grow snow peas this year.
How I Plan to Make May a Better Month
Most of my goals for April crapped out simply because of who I am and what I do for a living. So, to avoid the frustration of not completing, I am going to focus on realistic goals for the month.
Normally, I stick to realistic goals anyway. But if I have to spend two weeks working on another major project other than my own, I don’t want to stress myself out.
That happens a lot more than you probably realize.
For May, I’m going to aim for something that is a bit easier to manage in the event clients do come out of the woodwork.
Recently, I found that if I focus more on my time instead of finishing certain projects, I’m far less stressed. This doesn’t stop me from feeling a bit disappointed that I didn’t publish a blog post or video. But the reduction in stress level has been nice.
As a creator, I feel like I am letting people down if I don’t keep up with a specific schedule. And I know those who follow me understand that I am an exceptionally busy person.
Still, it makes me feel bad. Lately, though, I’ve been feeling OK with not getting everything done on my list as long as I spent the time wisely.
In April, that meant doing more work for clients who needed me.
So, in May, I plan on keeping up with the time management goal. This is my “80% Rule.” In a nutshell, I need to spend a bare minimum of at least 80% of my scheduled time working on daily projects.
Think about it seriously; do you know anyone who puts in a solid 6.4 hours per day at their job? I don’t count bathroom breaks, getting coffee, getting sidetracked with conversations, and other diversions that stop me from working or writing.
Throughout every job I’ve ever had, I’ve never met anyone who could put in a solid 8-hour day at their job without taking some kind of break.
Wrapping Up Kingmaker
I’m exceptionally close to having the second draft of my book completed. And I would love to get it out to the beta readers and do some more polishing before publishing.
As such, I am going to prioritize more time for Kingmaker over VII. At least until I can get it out to the readers. Then, I’ll do what I can to finish VII before the end of the month.
But I’m not going to stress over VII because Kingmaker is the book I want to be completed.
In reality, if all goes according to schedule this week, I might get Kingmaker out to the beta readers by Friday. If not, it’ll be shortly afterward.
Establish and Maintain Content Schedules
I know I said I wasn’t going to stress about content schedules. And to some degree, I’m still not. But I would love it if the universe lets me get some of my other projects on a routine.
Most of all, I want the new blog to maintain its schedule. The point of the blog is to drive traffic and demonstrate to viewers how they can create a website and how long it takes to be “successful.”
This means I am collecting a ton of data that is based on timely posts.
Since I am limited on time, I can only produce three posts per week. That should be plenty of content to get the ball rolling within a six-month period.
This is based on my experiences working with my own sites as well as those of my clients.
In any case, I’m going to set up blocks of time for those schedules. But I’m going to make sure that I’m OK with not getting everything done…as long as my time was spent well.
For instance, should a client need something desperately, I need to follow the money. Besides, they are who pay my bills. Obviously, I need to prioritize the paycheck over a side project.
Get Despair Going Again on YouTube
One of the things I’d love to do in May is to get Despair going again. It’s the audiobook that I’m producing on YouTube that doubles as a book for Wattpad.
It was an interesting idea as I write, edit, record, add sound effects, and upload the audio to both platforms. And I find those particular videos super fun to make.
In any case, Despair is probably one of my big goals for May. The plan is to start this week, but I might have to take a bit of time to get the flow going again.
It’s been about seven months since the last episode, and I don’t remember every detail of the story.
Work On This Blog’s Design
Lastly, I would love to spend a bit of quality time on the design of this website. In fact, I plan on setting up a few blocks of time in Asana to guarantee I can work on it.
I’m still toying with the idea of setting up a bookstore and selling my works directly from here. But like everything else in my life, that will depend on whether clients will leave me alone for longer than an hour.
For one thing, I spent money buying this theme’s license. I feel like I’m wasting it.
What Are Your Goals for May?
After all is said and done, my success comes down to time management. Especially since I need to take two days off this month for school concerts and graduations. Still, I didn’t do too bad last month with far more diversions.
If I can keep up the momentum and keep down the stress levels, some great things should snap into place in May. But I’ve said that before, all too many times.
Perhaps one day, I can spend all day doing nothing but blogs and books. Until then, I just gotta do what I need to do to keep the roof over my head and my daughter’s car on the road.
What kind of awesomeness do you have planned for May?