2019 is the year of productivity for me. I decided I wanted to be organized and set a schedule to stick to in order to be more consistent. Before, I'd worry about being productive 24/7. It resulted in me being too exhausted to write. I was spending too much energy on worry about getting stuff done and that left me with no energy to actually do stuff. Then I'd guilt trip myself as a result.
So, in 2019, with the help of Kathryn Lang's Whiteboard of World Domination, I made a weekly schedule and daily to do lists.
Alternating writing and art, I make daily to-do lists, one for each day, the month, and for chores.
At the beginning of each day, I write down tasks. There are some I do daily, like Swagbucks (I talked about what that is in my IWSG post.) A dash next to a task means I do it every day. I mark a D for done instead of checking it off and rewriting it the next day. Those I ensure I get done every day and are usually the first things I work on.
The other change I've made that has been a huge improvement in my productivity is I clock out. Hubby comes home at noon and I eat lunch with him. I don't write or paint. I break for lunch. Then in the evening, I clock out for the day. Anything I didn't get done gets moved to the next day.
I've only been doing this for a couple months, but it's been a tremendous help in keeping me consistently productive. I'm also not feeling as worn out all the time. When I sit down to write, 99% of the time I write. Even when I'm tired. Same for my art. I'm getting stuff done and it feels really great.
How do you stay productive? What tricks and tips have you learned? Curious to try mine? Have you checked out Kathryn's Whiteboard? Did you read my IWSG post on how to earn a little extra cash to help with book marketing?
The first Wednesday of every month is the Insecure Writer's Support Group. Posts go up the 1st Wednesday of every month. Check it out here and join if you need support with your writing. Don't forget to stop by and say hello to the co-hosts: Fundy Blue, Beverly Stowe McClure, Erika Beebe, and Lisa Buie-Collard!
I thought this month I've share a couple links to some sites I use to earn cash to pay for book marketing (and craft supplies) since I don't have a job. Now, these are referral links so I get points or some form of reward if you sign up.
First up is the one I've made the most from: Swagbucks. This site has a bunch of different things you can do to earn points. One point equals a penny. You get 2500 and you can cash out for $25. I manage to cash out about twice a month, but I also have the time to spend doing things like surveys to get to that point. Every morning I spend between 1-2 hours to hit the daily goal. Usually through surveys.
It also has shopping where you can earn points. Vista Print is on there and a lot of authors use it, so even if you don't do anything else, you can do that and earn some money back on something you already use.
Next is Survey Savvy. This is a survey site, but they also have an app you can put on your phone or desktop and earn $5 for each device. You don't have to do anything else because they're tracking what you're activity. Hubby doesn't like that, but I point out to him that Google, Facebook, and Twitter are already doing that, so I might as well get paid for it. The only downside to the phone app is I have to turn it off if I want to do anything then turn it back on. I think it has something to do with the VPN they use to encrypt the info. I can deal with that annoyance for $5 every month.
Last link I'm going to share is Achievement. This is for those who have FitBits. Just connect it to your FitBit profile and it grabs the data and gives you points. When you reach 10,000 points you cash out for $10. This one takes time, but you don't have to do anything extra. I've only cashed out once, and as you can see, I'm almost there again. Excuse me while I go for a walk.
These sites I've used and actually earned money from. Survey Savvy only sends checks. Achievement pays through PayPal. Swagbucks has a host of options like PayPal, Amazon or Visa gift cards, and more. You won't be rolling in dough like I've seen people claim (usually on Pinterest) but they do pay and you could at least buy a promo gig on Fiverr or gift an ebook to someone as a giveaway prize.
Are there any sites or apps you use to make some extra cash to put toward book marketing?
I wanted to write a quick post and talk about guest and sponsored posts. Recently, I've been approached and asked if I would have a post here highlighting a product. (The two Paperless Post ones, for example.) Since some sponsors tend to give some form of payment or compensation, I wanted to clarify the reasons I will agree.
I think the post or product is interesting.
I don't like dishonesty, and trying to deceive people makes me feel guilty and like crap. If I decide to highlight something on this blog, it's because I've tried it or I find the information interesting. Being a fake isn't on my bucket list (although, I often feel like a fake calling myself a writer, but what writer doesn't?) I'll always make a point to say if I was approached by someone for a guest post, and I at least spent some time playing around with the product or browsing the site for something I think is interesting to share. The way I figure it is if I'm endorsing it here, then I better mean it.
I have something cool to share with you. The owner of Literary Book Gifts asked me to give a critique of her store and offer a promo code to my readers. That kind of makes this post a two for one...or something. I dunno, my brain is bogged down by stupid fatigue, so I'm not wording well. Anyways, I agreed because as a crafter who sells her stuff, I enjoy supporting other creators.
First off, let me note that Literary Book Gifts has a nice, clean layout. It's not overly cluttered and easy to navigate. The font is black on white background which is something I advocate. I'm always, "YAY! I can read it without pain!"
The overall selection is nice. Not too many, but not too few. I noticed each category has a few options that the others don't. My biggest issue is there needs to be images of people using the products. A favorite site of mine, Think Geek, has action shots where buyers send in photos of them using the item. It gives a personal touch. Melissa doesn't have to do that exactly, but asking friends to do a photo shoot would go a long way in showing how the clothing fits and how many books you can shove into one of the bags.
Let me say here, I was not asked to try the products, but I saw a shirt I wanted. There was money left from my brother's estate, so this is my last Christmas gift from him. (Excuse me while I go cry.)
Plus, I wanted to test out the promo code I was given and make sure it worked.
The site said the shirts can run small, so I got a large. I'm glad I listened because the large fits like a medium on me. It was a little scratchy when I put it on, but that didn't last long. It just needed to be washed. One thing that made me very happy was the fabric is not paper thin. I had a friend give me a cool Subaru shirt and you can see my bra through it! Shipping only took 10 days. Not bad.
Now that I've shown off the site and given my thoughts on it, here's the part where I get to pimp Literary Book Gifts.
If you see something you like use PATRICIALYNNE20 to get 20% off. The code doesn't expire, so use it whenever you want or hand it out to family and friends with a gentle (aka hard) nudge as to what they need to buy you for your birthday. XD
Thanks, Melissa for the awesome shirt and for getting to see my name as a coupon code. (Can I just pause a moment and freak out over having my name in a promo code? That's something I've only seen with Youtubers. I feel like a big shot now. LOL!) I wish the best of luck with your shop.
* Marie Landry
* Rainy Kaye
* Story Dam
* A to Z Challenge
* Alex J. Cavanaugh
* Larry Kollar
* C. Lee McKenzie
* A Book Lover's Playlist
* Cherie Reich
* M. Pax
* MJ FiField
* Melissa Barker-Simpson
* Christine Rains
* Heather M. Gardner
* George McNeese
* Lexa Cain
* L.G Keltner
* Sarah Foster
* Chrys Fey
* Liana K (Youtube)
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