Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Organizing - The Key To Successful Freelancing?

What if I told you that the image of the successful writer banging away at the typewriter/computer surrounded by piles and piles of debris is a myth? I find it hard to believe that a successful freelance writer lives in such a mess. Wait, let me back track. Towers of organized piles in a code that the writer clearly understands counts as organization.

I'm talking about writers who have a room in which there is a spot that you could call a desk and a pathway lined with old take-out boxes, coffee grounds and various assorted junk. Someone who has no idea where the clips from their last article is and can't figure out where the email is that tells them their next deadline. Ah yes friends, even cyberspace needs to be organized.

Organization doesn't have to be complicated. You don't need to run out to the nearest Walmart or Container Store and stock up on a labels, color stickers and bins. The first thing you need to get organized is a bit of time.

Carve out a good niche of time in which you don't answer emails or the phone. Uninterrupted time will allow you to really see what needs to be done and what your organization tendencies are.

Think you can't afford to take time out and get organized? Think about how much time it takes you to find something from three weeks ago. How about if you're out and need to tell a spouse or a friend to grab an important document. Could you tell them where it was?

Being disorganized costs you money. Your time is precious and if an editor calls with a question about an article you wrote back in March, do you really think they are going to have time to wait while you go through months of invoices, junk mail and coupons?

This week is about getting organized. And I'm taking my own advice. I plan to organize both my office and my closet this week. So all this week we will have tips on getting organized -the freelance writer way.

Are you organized? When's the last time you did a clutter check?

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