I Heart Charts

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I love charts. I feel when I make a chart, I’m organized. Plus, I like the sense of accomplishment I get when I change text color/enter page counts/cross off what I’ve accomplished. One of the things I loved about Nano was the chart and the progress I saw. It’s one of the reasons I love the word counter bars.

Here’s how I keep track of my contests. This was before I got Excel. If you can see the numbers, you can see how many contests I’ve entered the past 5 years. And this isn’t all of them – I used to delete the contests I didn’t final in. Now to keep track, I change those entries to pink. Blue means finalled, red is outstanding and black is planned but not yet entered.

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I got this chart from Kresley Cole. It’s a very cool page count tracker and includes a pie chart. You get encouraging comments if you reach your daily goal, and butt-kicking if you don’t. I don’t use this one as much as I used to.

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I made this at the end of last year. This is my life at a glance. I find it really hard to keep up with, though. I like that it has everything going on in a week, but … maybe too overwhelming.

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This is very simple, but also very easy to keep track. I only have my writing goals on it, each story in a different color. If I get ahead, I cross out ahead, if I get behind, I divvy up the lack among the remaining days. It’s my current favorite, and I have one for each month for the rest of the year.

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But making charts can be time consuming – it’s a great procrastinator, but can also be a great motivator. Do you use charts to keep you on track?

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Jennifer Shirk said...

No, I don't. But I do submit a list of goals for the week to my CPs. They try to keep me on target.
Usually. LOL!

Kelly Boyce said...

I am such a chart maker. I could make a chart about the charts I'm going to make! My bestfriend who is a total panster just shakes her head as if there's no help for me. But it keeps me organized and on track so it must be working!

Michelle Rowen said...

Ooo... I want that Kresley Cole one. Where can I find it? I checked her site but couldn't see it anywhere. I am so disorganized I need something to whip me into shape.

KATZ said...

Oh, gosh, no!! lol I leave all the straight lines for my day job!
The most I've done is make an occasional spreadsheet on a goal... I have a list of mss with their submissions/progress that's at least 6 months old. :)

Thanks so much for voting for me at Gather!! :)

MJFredrick said...

Jennifer, that's how I started. BWAHAHAHA!!!

Kelly, ironically, I'm a pantser when it comes to writing, but I need to see my progress other than in the book. Weird, huh?

Michelle, I got it YEARS ago. I'll email you a blank one.

LOL, Sarah. Good luck with Gather!


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I'm a mom, a wife, a teacher and a writer. I have five cats and a dog to keep me company. I love bookstores and libraries and Netflix - movies are my greatest weakness.
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