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Quarterly Planning for Indie Authors: Work Rest and Play Your Way to Writing and Selling More Books — Self-Publishing Conference Highlight

by Alliance of Independent Authors
November 27th 2020

Creative business is not business as usual. Authors often define success very differently from your average business owners, work from different drivers, and find most planning methods are too one-... More

Hello, everybody. Our final session off self pop. Com. The Tooth and Tech Conference for indie authors. I hope those of you who have been enjoying previous sessions have had a good conference. Feedback on Twitter is really positive. We are really pleased with the all the sessions that we've had so far have been really fantastic. Eso I'm feeling the pressure now doing this last session. Onda Um, what I'm going to focus on today is a quarterly planning on a quarterly planning for indie authors. Is the name off the session on bond? What we're going to be looking at is where this kind of came out off in my own work is that working with authors, I find that very often unauthorized has a

maybe a marketing plan. They usually have a plan off some kind for how they're going to finish their book. They may or may not have the marketing plan there may or may not, in fact, most often do not have a profit plan or a product plan or an idea off how it all hangs together on DSO. This method off business planning for authors is about all the business. It's about creative business. It's about recognizing that we are in business. That is new for authors who have previously defined themselves as artists or professionals. Careers, you know, artisans, crafts, people, all sorts of definitions. But it's really pretty knew that also start defining ourselves as business people in the mainstream and as India is, we have to

. That's that's what we do is what we must do. And I'm not going to get into that today. But what we're going to to do is look at a method which kind of integrates everything all together and makes it possible for you to take hold of the fat off, the all the different aspect off your work, really, as an idea author. So what is that work? Let's just see if I can share my screen here with you. Andi, get a it's get mice. Yeah, so hopefully you are now seeing, um, my presentation as opposed to me. And we are You could hop into the comments, please, and just let me know that all is as it should be. And while you're there, just say hello

and tell us where you're coming in from today. I know it's early now on Sunday for a lot of the world. But for some of you, it's going to at times. So it's one of the most exciting things about Southport, Conn. And the reason that we run it for 24 hours is that it is global. It's all over the place. So I am told we are working. So that is fantastic. All right, Let's, um let's have a look then at what is going on here. So before I start, I want to say that what I'm going to talk about today I have an hour here on this is a long term thing. This isn't something like some of the other presentations where you get a clear, small find piece of work to do and kind of off you go and do it on your sort. It and this is a tool and started checking tools conference. This is a tool, but it is a tool that is very much part of you that grows with you. The changes as you develop it's a loose tool. It's

not a very rigid thing, and it's creative and therefore it has to be very personal also. Ah, lot of planning methods are very, you know, very what's the word? Analytical reasons. And to be honest, ah, lot of thumb, you know, you could spend a lot of time during the planning and not much time doing the stuff that actually makes creative flow happen on makes your creative business work on. This is sort of the anti planning plan in the sense that planning is really important. But it isn't important that you get everything right all the time. It's a messy process because it's a creative process on. We allow it to be messy. One of the big things is to kind of take the pressure off. So it's going to be untraditional, really, to the concept aunt to the ideas. And I hope you get some useful faults at minimum, to take away. If you have pen and paper, you can take notes about stuff that I'm saying. That applies in

particular to your business because every single one of us, just like our books are completely different, are also business is going to be completely different as well on I use all the business to describe everything that you do, including the writing, including the marketing, including the social media, including everything your business most encompass all of these different aspects off your job. So if you find that you want more of this, I run a creative planning for authors membership, which has a monthly workshop where we tease out in detail some aspect off created planning. These are not large scale webinars. They're very small on DSO. Everybody gets individual attention and there are questions about their particular business books where there are on a get answered in the session. So and if you want to doom or you

can you can take off that. But let's get to it now. So what I want to kick off by saying is that as, and those of you who have done any sort of planning stuff with me before and will have heard me talk about this, you're not just a writer, you're in India author and as an Indian author, you are also a publisher and what that means in, and you also are business owners. So there are three big functions on If you know, if you if you're not thinking and kind of planning around all of that, that can explain where things are not going so well for you. And if they're not, if you find that you're blocked in any way, if you find that your business isn't making the kind of profit that you would like it to be making if you're not selling as many books as you feel you should be selling thes are individual problems that will be found within the creative writing, the creative publishing of the creative business pockets

. Um, but as we go through our day, it doesn't help us much to think. Oh, I'm a writer. I'm a publisher. I'm a business owner. We can't really work with that. It is true, and it's the umbrella under which we work. But what we can work with is a sense of ourselves as makers, managers on marketers, marketeers, actually not just marketing the books, but selling them, getting them across the line, getting readers toe actually commit to paying for books. So we were these three hats as we go about our business on bond. I think one of the reasons why and India Office are challenged is because thes each of thes is a big deal. Being a good maker, making great books, and that means writing great books first, but then also producing great books. Designing all of that goes in editorial. All that goes into making a really good product, then managing the whole thing, you know, getting getting

it all done without getting yourself into a state, having a clear processes on actually having profitable outcomes. That's what the manager thinks about and looks after on. Then there is the marketer, the market here who must go out there and let people know you can have a brilliant book on the other products and projects to sell on. Do not sell any of therm because you're not doing the right things very often also think it's about working harder and doing more tasks. Creative business planning is the opposite of that. It's very much about getting selective, drilling down or understanding exactly what you're about as an author. Andi actually working from that on a daily basis, so I'm gonna show you a method that where that takes you from the start, where you begin to get a clear idea of what it is you want to achieve at the end on then working reverse engineering back through time for that that's

what this presentation is going to do just very briefly. First, if you're writing is not going well, it's because you're not in that moment. Creative enough or you haven't yet got a creative process that gets the books through you and out into the world saying with book production, If you're getting stuck and you're not getting beyond it, it's because you're not applying a creative solution. Same with marketing and promotion. If you're stuck there and things aren't happening, it doesn't mean that you have to turn into a mad, crazed sales, the type of person. You're not able to do that anyway, so don't even try. Apply creativity on business. Yes, even the money. My contention is if a Ninja authors business installed, it's because you haven't got created enough about your business on I don't mean creative accounting. What

I mean is that you need as an author and this is something you don't sit down and kind of work out once, and then you've got it. This is something that you know as your is really why you are an author on. But as you are developing as you're growing as you're expanding as you're writing more books and producing them and bringing in more readers around you, you're developing all the time. A sense of yourself under various headings, your values. What really matters to you as a person, your mission, what you would like to change in the world, your passion, what you really enjoy doing. When you bring those together, you get this place I call the Machin. That's kind of mash up of it all. Andi, there is where you find your ideal reader. Your genre is there. Your niche is there. Your sub categories in Amazon are there. You need to know what is uniquely you in the books that you are putting out. And if you're putting out different kinds of

books, you need to do this for each off these different parts of you and strands of you on bond. This is what I mean by applying mawr creativity. Very often, if we get stuck, we look for an answer from somebody else on. But they may not have the answer for you in your business because, as I said, it's very unique to each each of us. We look for a quick fix on very often it's about going deep on spending time rather than applying. You know, something that's just going toe. Take a box. So a lot of the great tools that we have had on the conference and over the past 24 hours, they if they're not handled within a context where you understand what it is you are trying to achieve at the end, then you could just spend your time flying from one very nice shiny tool to

another, but not actually making any progress on DSO. This session is all about planning your way to progress and to your definition off success. That is the end point. So we need to create a planning when if you work the kind of person this is. Our creative business is like a operates in exactly the same way as our books operate. Some of us are panthers on. Some of us are platters. So if everything is going fine for you, if you are producing well on, do the books air getting through you and out into the world and you are increasing your sales, then you're fine. But if you're finding that you're you're stuck anywhere along the pathway So you're not writing enough. You're not producing enough books. You're not producing enough profits. Then there

is a block somewhere in your process and perhaps in more than one place so very often we don't know that we don't know what we need to do to approach our business in a creative way. We don't know enough about our own creation process in the first place. So we could we could be to conventional and how we go about our day, especially if we've already. If we're already in day jobs that are highly structured, or if we have a long history off day jobs that were, you know, managing a very conventional business sort of way, we can get stuck into being a bit boxed like that. Um, if we don't know, actually, how do we put a book together? What is our process? Tim Lewis was talking in the session about the tools about how much time he's spending at the moment, since locked down, getting his processes straight, and you need to put a bit of investment into that. But the out come on

, the payoff is huge. On the other thing that I find authors don't know about is they don't know how to shape assets on. They don't know how to shape their process. Onda again. We don't have time to go into exactly what I mean by assets, but creative assets are your books on your process, on everything that is in your business, shaped in such a way that it is working for you. It is doing what you want it to do. Andi, If we don't have a sense of that, if we don't have a sense of ourselves as kind of theme manager, the creative director off everything that we're doing, we can become very confused on. We could become very, very busy without very much in terms of outcome. So I'm just going to quickly go through the seven stages off the creative process because thes apply no matter what you're trying to create on demand. This really will be a with through. But we

start up here with number one the intention to create something. We just know that we want to do it on. We decide we're going to the idea that we have for this creation, though we'll need incubation. Sometimes it's incubated before we get the idea of the intention. But even then there is an incubation period after the intention kind of comes to us on board, we need to give it that time and very often in that time we can get a bit frustrated with ourselves and it annoyed with ourselves. But actually what we're doing is incubating the idea while incubating we investigate. That means researching on the conventional sort of ways. We think of research in the library, on Google or whatever, but also researching our memory, researching our imagination on, do you know, getting a really clear sense of what it is that we want to do are clearing off. I'm not really care, but just clear enough that we can begin the next

stage, the formation stage, the beginning. Thio create some sort of draft, a blueprint of what it is we're trying to make happen. After the drafting, it comes the stage called elaboration, which is where we deepen the idea we expanded. We add to it a bit when we see what has worked. We do a bit more of that on. There is also the clarification the Korean Correction stage. This will be the editing in a novel and or a book. I should say it's about refining the idea, getting closer to what it is we were trying to do, and eventually it comes to a point where we can say, Hey, it's finished I did it. It's done on bond. This applies. This wheel applies to and you go around and around the wheel. It's not in your it all. You go back to the incubation and you go onwards again. You know, it's it's a creative process isn't a tidy circle like this. But this circle helps us to understand the different

stages on off the creative process because there's absolutely no point in trying to draft If you haven't done your incubation, there's absolutely no point in trying toe edit. If you haven't done your deepening eso, it's really important that you get the stages into the right stage off the process. The other thing is that it applies to everything. So it's easy to see maybe how this applies to your book, but maybe not so easy to see how it applies to your business profits or how it applies to your marketing plan. But everything we make from you know this morning's breakfast to the most elaborate a lifetime's work as an India author. Everything we make is going through these phases on bond. We're in the middle, we're in the middle of a lot of them, and that's why things can get really confusing. So what I'm going to go

through with you now, this is up to here is kind of background. So you understand where I'm coming from. I'm going to bring you through now is a process where you thought you could apply to plan things a bit better for yourself. We're going to use, um I use different terms which are here on this slight is Well, when we're thinking about what we want to make happen, we often mix up goals, intentions, plans and so on. So here is the terminology that I use. We map for long term stuff. So when we're thinking about our lifetimes work as an author or we're thinking about the next decade what we're going to get into our the smallest period here the next year we're mapping. We're putting down a general kind of sense of what it is we want to dio and we'll begin here with the year and with the new year that is coming, we will begin

just by asking you to take a look at that year and just begin to kind of make a map off what it is. You would like Toa happen across that year when we look at medium term time. So the porter, the month on the week we're looking at plans, so we're not saying this is definitely goingto happen, but we're making a plan for us. Ondas part off the membership at the great planning membership We do a weekly and every week we set our intentions for the week, and then we come back at the end of the week and say what we have accomplished. Andi Itt's the plan. Very often you find you you're planning one thing. By the end, when it comes to logging the accomplishments, you may have accomplished something completely different or it may all have gone according to plan on different weeks are different on, but it doesn't matter as long as you're moving

in the direction you want to be moving in, and then when it's shorter, so less than the week a day or the session that's in front of you. We've got. We're in the realm of creative intention now. We mean, as we know what we're going to do for this period of time, you know exactly where our focus should be. We're not going to get distracted by all the things we're not going to start. Mood Ling about all the possibilities. We've reduced it down to here on here. We know what we have to do, and we need to get on with doing it. And that's why I have this time period here down in the bottom, right hand corner, which is creative time, because time isn't just linear time also is each moment, Andi, some moments can be very deep on full of flow on some moments can be very shallow and gone without us even having connected with, um, creativity is always about connecting with where you are right now, and it isn't worried about what's going to happen in the future. And it isn't kicking yourself for

what happened in the past. It is just fully present, engaged on. In a sense, you become a conduit for something that is bigger than you that is flowing through you. We have this experience often in our writing. If we apply created principles, we can have that experience in our book production action in our even doing our accounts. I know you don't believe me on that one. Okay, so let's just take a look at where you are right now. So this is where the planning process begins. It begins with you on where you are, and I don't have time to go through all these different aspect, but it's really good if you can do a kind of summary just where you find yourself right now. No judgment. No, no, I should have. I failed to do this. You know, I thought I would get such and such done. Lock down has really thrown

all my plans in a bucket. None of that just summary of where I am. Summary of your strengths on weakness is still wearing each of your different hats. So as a maker, as somebody who is making books and other media to promote those books, you are You have strength. You have things that you're good at on. Do you have things that you're not so good at? You have phases of the process that go easily for you. You might love the drafting phase. Hate the editing might be the other way around. You have strengths and weaknesses again. No judgment. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. Just note down what yours are. Much better toe work with your weaknesses under around thumb. Want to ignore them and pretend they're not there? Then if you make a nose off particular opportunities that are there for you, that excite you and delight you things that now there are so many opportunities for indie authors that you could get carried away on this one and a lot of us do

, we can skip from opportunity to opportunity without actually developing the ones that are most important to us. So referring back to the values, the mission, the passion, the mash in the niche, the micro niche, the genre, who you are is a right or what you want to be, what sort of legacy you want to leave, referring to all that big stuff. What the opportunities for you right now on what are the threat? What's not. You know what's out there. Opportunities and threats are where you look out side off yourself. what's going on in the world. Sometimes things happen to us that we have absolutely no control over on. That's the kind of thing I'm talking about, Andi. Then, um, it's also good for you to do if you haven't already for you to do a list off comparable authors to have that list on. To keep adding to what whenever you meet any author but you feel is comparable to you

in any way about specifically in relation to your genre, your niche and your micro niche, So another thing to just kind of make a note off. Who are the comparable authors for your books on bond? This is something as an India author, because you're the publisher, you really need to know this. You really need to know what what is selling out their water readers enjoying in the kind of book area that you want to be in and you want to be a player in on Finally, just to make a note off? What is your unique value? Why should readers care? What are you bringing that isn't out there already? What's special about you and your books on? Do you know this is a daunting one for us all. It's very hard for us to think of ourselves in those terms. But just like every child is special. Andi unique and different and has something to offer. It's the same for every adult and every writer on, but there are loads of books that are not

being written that need to be written. Do not let yourself be put off by the fact that a lot of books are being written and published. That's irrelevant when it comes to create a planning on creative work that you are going to do so once You kind of made a note off where you are. The next thing is to kind of get a sense of where you're going and just giving through this. We mentioned it already in terms of values, your passion, your mission, what you want to make happen, and all of that in here should also go your profits. What sort of outcome do you want monetarily financially from your author business? Because you are in business, your answer might be nothing. I don't really care. I've got a day job. I intend to keep a day job. I'm writing for my own pleasure. That's absolutely fine. That's not really what this session is about, though, And it's not really what the Creative Business Planning and Membership on DMA method

is about. It's very much about people who want to actually make a living from the writing ideally, but certainly make profits from their efforts. So if that's where you're going, if that's where you want to go, then you need to get that down on the other thing you need to think about it as an author is influence. What is it you're trying to influence? What kind of influence do you want? Tohave wash? Are you know what are your books offering again? It's part of that. But also who you hanging out with? Who would you like to hang out with? What do you want to see happen as an author? As somebody who has decided to write books, you do want to have an influence, whether you know it or not, you want to get inside the mind, the heart, the soul, the imagination off a reader on stir them on Do stir them to something on I don't know what that is, but make a note of it. Get it down there. So after you've worked out where you are right now and where you're

going, you need to have a think about how you're going together. Onda. The most important thing in this list here is the creative conditions you set up for yourself. So very often we're having a big fight with ourselves because we're not doing what we think we should be doing creatively on. Really. What's wrong? Is that the conditions we haven't said the conditions in place so creative conditions into time space your relationships. You know people's awareness of you as a as a creator how important it is to there's so many different conditions that you need to have that make creating easier for you. You might need to get out of the house and go to the cafe. You might need to bury yourself in the basement of the house. You might need music playing. You might need silence, you know, whatever it is, whatever your creative conditions are, whatever it's a good flow going for. You make notes about that. But more importantly, start setting those conditions in place on all the time where we refine that I mean, I've seen writing

on publishing books now for I'm not going to say how many years it's shockingly frightening, but I still improving my conditions and getting a clearer sense of myself as a writer and what I'm trying to do. And you know why. I'm why I'm putting all this time and effort and everything else into it on DSO. Yeah, your conditions are really, really important. Also important is your product ecosystem. If you've been listening to the advanced Self Publishing Advice podcast, he asked Ally podcast with Joanna Pen. We've been talking a lot about other products Onda product ecosystem, more than one stream of income, not putting everything on your book. So make a note. If there are other things that you would like to do to supplement or and be part off your mission. Compassion. As a writer on do you need to also have a profit on a salary account set up in

the bank s O that you can see your profits going in there on whatever you're paying yourself going in there so that you're not finding that you're just paying editors and you're just paying desires. You're paying everybody else everyone else gets paid and you get nothing at the end of us or you're even in death. So you need to start thinking about profit, and that begins with having the bank accounts set out. And in fact, our next workshop is going to be, which is that the last Friday of this month workshops on the last Friday of every month. Our next workshop is actually going to be about profits on how to plan for profit. So the other thing you need to understand and know is to take the topic off this conference really important on bond it. Your tools and your technology are really, really vital and your techniques. But again, as I said, they have to fit into this overall umbrella that we're looking at when you get the right tool, a good piece of tech. It can really make a difference

to you as a writer, as as a publisher and really hope that some of the tools and technology that we brought to you for the conference has been helpful on that. And assistance is another thing you would, you know, have a think about. If you're at the start, you probably don't have a budget for assistance, but you might want to do what lots of businesses do and also seem to find unthinkable, which is. Work out your budget in advance for the year and actually fund your business upfront. Invest in your business and yourself and invest in the assistance you need to take you and further faster on. You could have more profits in the end by actually doing it that way around on finally, the your own process. How you going to get there? This more than anything, it ties into the creative conditions. But actually knowing your process, do you write fast or slow? Do you write best in the morning or the evenings

and long burst? Do you need dedicated time? Some people can snatch the writing on the goal. Whatever they're doing. Other people need or feel. They need a lot of time and then questioning your process. If you do feel you need devoted, time is going to be much harder for you. Why do you feel that just because you've always done it that way have you actually tried doing it another way? Experimenting and flooring your own process is an ongoing part off knowing how you're going to get where you want to go on. But then the last bit and we're really bad at this. Generally speaking as author is how am I going to know I got there? Because the thing about being an author is when you finish the book, there is the next book on board. You know, you pay yourself this month, but you gotta pay yourself again next month and everything. Life just keeps on rolling on. So how are you going, toe actually know that you've arrived. So you you need measures

for this on your measures for your production is your books. How many books have you actually got? Or your other products? If you're doing supplementary premium products or you know you're doing and you have a A service on stream a swell what you actually get through and out the door, that's one off your measures. Influence is another measure. Your reader engagement followers, fans on bond on relationship with other influencers on that can be measured. You can actually end with with social media metrics and stuff like that. It's actually very easy to measure. You're how you're doing on the influence thing, which would be really quite difficult before, um, and profits, actually measuring the money, just looking and seeing Okay, I didn't make a profit. And here's how much I made on Here's what I'm gonna make next time out

on the most important metric and measure off all is your own personal satisfaction. What actually makes you feel good? Have this name for called the creative happiness quotient, Andi giving yourself a score from, you know, 1 to 10 about how happy it's all making you at the moment on. If if you were putting in a planning that so that was making you feel stressed on bond like you weren't living up to yourself and making you feel, you know, small or inadequate in anyway, well, that will be completely wrong. And that's why you have to measure your own personal satisfaction as much as you measure your money in the bank, your reader followers and so on in terms than off the If, by the way, if you have questions and do feel free to put them into the

comments section, and I will try to get to them at the end if if, if you have. I know I'm throwing a huge amount at you here, but I wanted to get us much in as possible. So yeah, so that idea of looking at where you're at on just giving yourself a simple score from 0 to 10 is a really useful thing to Dio. And I just want to briefly, another little wheel for you and begin to wheels, wheels and circles because that's the creative way. It's not linear and straight lines, and this is the business, the creative business success. Well, this applies to India, all through sort of anyone who's running a passion powered business. Anyone who's business is not just about making money, but it's also about something else. Onda, particularly digital business. So again, I'm not going to spend a lot of time on it. But I want you to just understand these the things that you need to be doing in order to get from where you are now to where you

want to go. These are the things that you're probably already doing, and you'll be doing them to a different level off competence or expertise, depending on how long you've bean at this, whether you've got a blind spot. Whether you've got a block on, duh, which things you like to do more than others and so on. So this is a way of just this is your whole business in front of you. Everything you have to do is contained in this little wheel. So let me let me talk you through it, going to begin on the right hand side, which is where most and writers begin when they're thinking about what they're doing here with the maker. So we spoke with the three hats earlier on the Maker houses little yellow hash up here. The maker is the person who makes the books that includes the writing of the books and theatrical book production. The maker also makes media around the books. So you might think of that is marketing

, but it is actually a maker task. It's one that you need to bring your creativity into and that you need to link in and tie in with your books as much as you possibly can. So that part off your say, social media posts or your launch materials or whatever you've got to make those they they're going to take away writing time. You know, bookmaking time because you have to make those on. They have to be creative on great ondas. Interesting on board, unconnected to the motions that made you write the books in the first place as possible. So that's these are the two maker bits over there on the right hand side. Um, then coming down here. We're into the market here. I call it market here because it's it's more than marketing. It's not enough to just market. We must market in a way that gets a sale. So that doesn't mean we never give anything away free. We actually do. But we do it in a way

that has a pathway that somebody can take, not forcing anybody to do anything. Wonderful thing about business for creatives in the 21st Century is it's calm Round two, operating much more like us than ever before, so we generally don't like pushy sales on we don't want to be pushy salespeople, and that actually is a huge block for a lot of authors in terms of their own success, but actually just gets right in the way. They can't get beyond that, but you can get beyond that, you don't need to stay behind that fence it all on. But that's how you do that is by putting on your market to your hat on. This is a fun hat as well. This is very much about connecting back to the vision to the mission to the passion on, then going out there with your stuff. So the market here works in two ways. Through partnerships, which is other other authors. I was talking about the comparable authors earlier, but also

anyone who's working in your sphere. Anyone who could get is a connector between you and your readers that would include could include booksellers, librarians and literary event organizers. Allah, you know it could their loads of things and people that could fall in here. Your market here has a plan again. This doesn't mean that it's phony and you're just trying to use people to get somewhere. It just means that you're actually directing your creative energy into the proper place on allowing it to do it. Spain allowing it to flow. The other thing that a marketeer does is projects so that it might be a launch might, you know, a three month plan around how I'm going to actually get this book that has just come out. Just go out of my brain out into the world. Nobody knows about it. How am I actually going to make sure that people get to know about it? So the market here, where is that hash where it's all about looking out into the outer world

? I'm trying to get people to do what we want them to do, Andi. Then we come to the manager very often. Authors and creatives generally look at the manager as some kind of headmaster, or we could witch or, you know, somebody who's trying to constrain thumb on do It could be a whole area. That India office Just don't go. Just don't go there. Just ignore it on def, you do. You just want to get where you want to go. You're quick. We find that you're not producing books or anything else on. Nothing has nothing is moving. You're stuck. So just looking at what the manager tells the manager actually sets up. I was talking with the creative conditions, or Iran sets up the creative and commercial conditions for the maker and the market here to thrive so that they can do so. The maker in the market. You can actually do their work, and certain things need to be in place. So the first thing that a manager

thinks about always is assets and assets is a huge topic. I'm not going to get into it now, but your books or your assets, your processes, your asset. You know you have lots of things in your business. Already. Your intellectual property is your asset. Lots of things in your business. Already, your manager has a clear understanding of all of these assets on what they are, what they're doing and how to grow them so that they're working for you separately from you the manager, or is also the person who makes the decisions about the tools and the tech. So having looked at this conference and the manager will go off on, well, maybe purchase a tool or experiment with the to download the free to try and see, does this actually improve the process? Does this actually improves the profits makes those kinds off decisions on the other thing is that manager is always thinking about the processes, the publishing process that you're going through where you are on that process. What what stage you're in, what timings

things going to happen under. I mean, one thing you always know respect the India all the community is that the longer somebody has been doing this, the longer they give to the actual and marketeering process and on the other things that are needed to reach readers. So the manager is aware off the resources in the business how much money you have, how much time you have on what is the best kind of use of that on keeping the manager hat on is what keeps the business working and working well, so well, I Yes. So that is the overview on do that. As I said, that last slide is your creative business in a nutshell. But then you come back today and you know, how am I going to turn all that? And how do I know where I'm, um And how do I know where I want to go? And all the things that the earlier slide over the start of the presentation referred to? How can I actually

take all that Andi think of now And where I'm going right in this moment. So I'm going to talk about looking at the next year. So we are now sort of in the first month of the last quarter off 2020. What a year it has Bean. So we're looking forward to 2021 this is a good time to begin to think about a year, the year ahead. It's not a good time to start thinking about the year after the Christmas hangover has abated on. You're beginning to look at January 1. This is the time to begin to think about next year. Five years, 10 years. What are the things? Because you've taken on something that isn't a short term endeavor, what do you want to see unfolding over the time that's coming, particularly over the next year? And so I've called this presentation quarterly planning on. Do we base our planning in, um, Patri in? We

base our planning on the quarter for a reason. It's really simple quarters work quarters. A quarter is a really good period of time for you to begin to start thinking about how it changed everything for me. How I do it is 12 weeks and then a week off, roughly speaking on day, looking forward to that week off is always is always really good, you know, knowing that it is there because I think I didn't actually refer to it back on the slide as I should have. And in fact I'm going to take you back to just say it here as creatives is creative work, creative rest and creative play. We need to plan all of these because as creatives, we need that creative rest, that conscious creative rest, that conscious creative play. If we're only working, we're very soon going to find ourselves drying up. So we have to integrate, as well as integrating the makers manager in the marketer. We have to integrate it in a way

that allows for work, rest and play across the year and across the week on across the day and even across the hour, perhaps, but certainly across the day and across the week across the quarter across the month across the year. So looking forward to next year, then perhaps this will be the first time that you will actually look at what you're going to do next year, and not just think about going to write such and such a book, What I'm urging you to do here as part off this creative planning process for indie authors. I'm urging you to also think about what your market here is going to do next year on what your manager is going to do next year to help everything along. So, looking at the year, you just literally break it into four. It is that simple. What you see there in front of you. The first. It's three months, roughly two each quarter. Andi, As I was saying before, I kind of whizzed back there to talk about the work, rest and play as I was saying, You know, it's

really ah, fantastic period of time because it gives you enough time to really get a proper chunk of work Done. A month is rarely enough with the book, but three months makes a difference. Toe every book on DTI every business, so it gives you enough time to actually see something happen, Aunt to follow a plan through from start to finish and get a sense of achievement, it's manageable in your mind in a way that the year is not Andi, you could break it down a very easily, which is what we're going to do now. In a moment you could break it down very easily across the quarter to see how everything is looking for you and get it. Get a really good sense off what's coming up in the immediate short to medium term. So we begin, and I'm not going to go through these thes planning sheets with you. But I just wanted to show you the sort of how they work and the thinking behind them because you don't need a planner like this. Actually at all a

noble campaign is enough. But you do need is to understand the principles that I was talking about earlier in the presentation aunt, to apply them into the time frame that you're in at the moment. So here's how we do do this using these planners. So we would look at the creative intentions for the year to come, and we would come down to one top intention under the three headings of Work, Rest and play. So just to give examples under the work thing, you might say Okay, by the end of next year, I'm going to have £10,000 in my profit account or having paid myself a salary for the entire year. Okay, I'm just putting a big sort of go there and we might say, I am going to have finished a book. Three books rate. Some people go. Could be 10 books, you know, whatever is, whatever the work outcome, you want to see what's the most important one to you. I'm going to just throw it out that it might not be

getting the book done. It might actually be setting up some of the processes on by some of the other things, but you need a top intention for the year and then arrest intention for the year to every year. You should be taking a creative retreat of some kind, preferably by yourself. So this would be in addition to any you know, writers conferences you might enjoy or whatever a retreat that's all about. Rest all about just getting quiet, not doing anything, getting off the technology, you know, Did you fast for a week, preferably two completely getting down time. Nothing is more nurturing on more rewarding for creative than creative rest on also creative play. So you should also be planning some kind of thing that gets you excited that you really enjoy your definition of play, whatever that might be. Andi thes air things that

you know. It's not about spending time with your family and all the other things that are what you might call things that life draws from us and needs from us. I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about things that nurture you, things that make you feel better about yourself, things that fill your creative well. So planning in a vacation that is play is all about up time. So it could be something physical that often works really well for authors. And it doesn't have to be, though, but it should be. Your definition of play into the planner also would go then. Just any major events that you know are happening next year. Things that you know can't be ignored on. That you simply must do on just to remind yourself because of your plans, an important plan you pop in your top value your mission for next year. You're and what, what it is you're offering out to the world. You know, you're kind

off mission statement. Bullshit. What's driving you and empowering you to do all that? You're going to Dio? Because, let's face it, it's not an easy job that we've we've given ourselves. So we need big motions to keep us there and keep us connected. So good to have that in on your yearly plan. Then you just do a simple map off the maker manager on marketer intentions. Just mapping out the work contentions across the four quarters. Q. One Q two Q three and Q four Andi down here, then comes a little. My favorite part of the maps is the prophet log on maps, so you will put in what you actually had as an income on in 2020. So income is all the money that comes in the door. Andi. It's a figure, but it's not a very useful one in terms of actually making a living and running a good business. But it's good to see how much

you're actually is actually coming in. Much more interesting is what is left at the end of it all on goes to us a salary on that. Should that gets noted in here, how much did you actually pay yourself in 2020 on, then, in addition to your salary, you should Your business should have some profits that it holds on. Do you need an account for each of these? So if you're operating off one bank account, you are going to be very confused. So you need you need a tax account and your income account where everything comes in and out of that girl's your tax account, your profit account on your salary account. So you need to have separate accounts for all of those so that when you look into that account that income accounts that everything comes into you don't get a false sense of security with the whole ultimately sitting there that you don't own at all. But it isn't actually yours, Andi. Then knowing how 2021 having filled out the figures for 2020 then you fill in the figures here for your intended

income next year. Your intended salary next year, your intended profit. So that is the year map. It's very simple. Just doing that is enough. You don't need to do any more than that on. Then we go from the year into the quarter on bond. It's a similar process, then all the way through. It's just the maps are broken down a little bit differently, depending on the time frame. So here on the left, you will put in the things that you've just put into your yearly map, then get translated over here in summary. So you see in front of you what it is you're about, Andi. Then appear you map the creative work that you want to do this quarter, the creative rest that you're going to take this quarter, the creative play that you're going to get involved with this quarter on by the quarterly profit plans on the tax account. And everything is all in here, and you will just match

out again. It's very simple. It's worn just little column off things to fill out. But it is revolutionary when you start to actually follow it on. Then at the end of the quarter down here, you'll actually log. What happened? What are your top three accomplishments for that quarter? What are you most proud of having John on? Then what needs attention for the quarter to come? Then we get into the month. This is a monthly planner with just the days of the month marked out on again the maker. What's the maker going to get up to? So you put your work intentions up here? Um, across the three months off, the quarter. So month, one month to month three and then I'm here. You look at maker, the manager and the marketer here. The different things that they're going to do. The maker What are they going to produce on to publish the manager? What are they going to process

and profit from on the market here? What are they going to promote on cell Andi in here again? We have the profit map on log. What? The balance you opened with what went out this month and what you ended up with our Sorry? Yeah, this month. Yeah, what you ended up with, and then what needs attention? Work wise. Next month, the day planner. Then every day you can whip one of these. I was but again, as I said, you could just use a notebook. You just up the top. Make sure you have your work rest and play intentions listed so that you know what they are for the weak could have three a week in each, which is a nice way to look very often when we look at our calendars. Always see is other people things that they want us to do. But if we get our calendar, don out with these first, then were nurtured enough to very happily go on meet and do things with other people on, then you just get really granular about what you're going to do today and the work on the work front

. What you going to do today? On the rest, on the play front. I'm not letting you off that rest and play hook. You have to actually planet. You need to put it in there. Andi, observe yourself. Observe how difficult it can be sometimes for you to take a creative rest for you to give yourself the joy of some creative play but is very telling. This is something that really worth noticing. You circle here which type off activity that you're involved in, and then you take it when it's done, giving that nice sense of accomplishment on board. This is a map of the day so you can map out any key times that you want on again At the end of the day, you know your accomplishments really quickly. Well, I did this for work. I did this for estimated this for play. Okay, Sorry. Yes, I got that backwards, didn't I? I skipped to the day. I didn't notice that we didn't do the week, but anyway, it's It's a very, very similar process. So I'm

actually going to just say you just do your intentions list about this actually makes compiling the day one easier. So you go from the month to the week on, then to the day. So that is it clashes how the creative planning process works. It's an overview. I hope it has also given you some ideas on some things to think about in relation to your own creative business. If you'd like to know Mawr about the creative planning workshops and a monthly membership is, as I said, a monthly workshop. We have the Facebook group, which you might like to go to anyway and facebook dot com forward such groups for such goal created in business. Andi membership gives you you know, the workshop each month tasks to do get you thinking specifically about your own business, the downloadable planners. We fill them out at the session on. We hold each other accountable in

the Facebook group. So if you'd like to go deeper with any of this, but is the way to do that on day? And you will find that at orna ross dot com forward slash bunning So that is it for my session. Thehuffingtonpost with Tim Lewis very shortly to say goodbye to self Pop Khan October 2020 and do jump in on de Enjoy the sessions. Lots of great stuff there for you. And thank you very much for joining me today. Um, for this session, it's been it's my joy, this stuff. I absolutely love working with authors and helping them to see where their their own specifics need a little kind of clearing off the pathway and getting the blocks and barriers out of the way and on the difference that that can make I no longer. Unfortunately, I'm able to do that on a 1 to 1 basis. But yeah, I hope I hope you got something from

it. I will see you on Twitter. We are live tweeting today, um, post conference and We've got lots of giveaways and things coming up a swell. So watch out on Twitter. I'm going to be actually do ruffling a consultancy session with years membership off the workshops. So that will be on Twitter little later on. Have a great rest of conference and great rest of the weekend and talk to you soon. Take care now. Bye bye.

Quarterly Planning for Indie Authors: Work Rest and Play Your Way to Writing and Selling More Books — Self-Publishing Conference Highlight
Quarterly Planning for Indie Authors: Work Rest and Play Your Way to Writing and Selling More Books — Self-Publishing Conference Highlight
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