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As I write this, it’s 23 out and feels like 14.  I can hear the wind howling between the buildings.  A bundled-up woman and a little white dog with a sweater are out walking.  Despite the cold, that dog is still checking every telephone pole!  Good time to be inside doing writing and administrative tasks like my book and story inventory.

I’ll admit it—I’ve gone from productivity system to productivity system, trying to figure out what works for me.  Part of that is my crazy day job—think getting hit with a fire extinguisher all day and trying to fit a tornado through a keyhole.

Most systems are surprisingly complex, sometimes with the author’s own self-imposed complexity.  Some are outdated.  Try getting hit with a fire extinguisher all day and prioritize by A, B, C.  Does. Not. Work.

I tried Trello as a test run for work.  It does better if you have projects.  Which meant it wasn’t going to be useful for work.  I don’t have any projects.

But I decided to revisit it, since I’m working towards publishing a book a month.  Plus I have short stories on tap to be e-published, as well as cover refreshes. I’ve previously had the inventory in a spreadsheet, but after there are so many entries, it gets cumbersome real fast and lose stories on the list.

This is from Trello’s Editorial Calendar template.  Trello is like a storyboard.  You can create different lists (i.e., Ready for Publishing) and drag the cards with the story from list to list.

Trello board display showing 5 lists: Writing, Editing, Making Graphics, Ready for Publishing, and Published.
Click on image to see it better

Each card has a place for comments (mostly for collaborating with teams, but useful for making quick notes), a checklist, and the ability to add attachments.  So I made the cards look spiffy with my covers.

This is my checklist, not a template from the calendar.  This one’s for Golden Lies, which is at the copy editor’s (there’s a comment below the screenshot where I noted the date I sent it).

Click on image to see it better.

Text from the list:

  • Write book
  • Copy editing
  • Create ebook cover
  • Format to ebook
  • Write blurb
  • Create keywords
  • Publish to D2D
  • Publish to Amazon
  • Publish to Smashwords
  • Publish to Publishdrive
  • Publish to BundleRabbit
  • Publish to Website

Since Golden Lies’ release is dependent on the copy editor schedule, doing all this helped me identify one omnibus I could publish in February if that schedule gets thrown off.

Golden Lies Log One cover: spaceship orbiting a planet, stars and more planets in background.