planner stuff

Fourth and Goal

No, I don’t watch football. Well, not anymore. I used to, but the last time I watched football really was… well, yesterday, to be honest. But it was the Funday Football on Disney+, where they did real time animation of the football game from London (it was hilariously glitchy.) No, In this case, fourth and goal doesn’t mean how far you have to go in football. It’s how far we have to go in 2023. October 1st marks the beginning of the fourth quarter. I’ve done my fourth quarter planning and my goals are up on my kanban board. It’s time to look toward bringing this year to a close.

Kanban, research shelf and Ink.

My immediate goals? Finish Balance of Power. Keep working on The Sea Prince. Edits on Morrigan’s Heir will be in some time this month, so I’ll be turning those around to get the book out by the end of 2023. And then I have to revise Morrigan’s Wrath to get that in to the editor. The anniversary edition of House of Sable Locks will be coming out soon (how soon? I don’t know!) and there are things to be done for that. There’s research that I really should get back to doing, although that’s lower priority to closing out the year and revisiting my business plan for 2024. I’m also considering pulling some of my short stories and getting them up for sale, but that may be a 2024 goal and not a 2023 goal.

Balance of Power
Heir to the Firstborn, Book 7

30416 / 90000 (33.80%)

The Sea Prince
The Coral Throne, Book 1

62124 / 120000 (51.77%)

Work on The Sea Prince has slowed down a little, and will slow down even more once the edits come in. Co-writing is much more of a juggling act than writing a book solo, because my interruptions rarely coincide with Danielle’s interruptions, which means that one of us is usually waiting on the other to look over things. We’ll eventually get the hang of this and get this book done.

The SPFBO judges have to announce their finalists by October 31st. This means that, at some point this month, I will find out if Written in Water will continue on in the contest. I’m surprisingly okay with either option. There are so many amazing books that have been cut already so if I am cut, I’ll be in fantastic company.

Keep an eye out for a special blog post/newsletter post in the next week or so — I’ll be able to show you the beautiful new cover of House of Sable Locks!


A new Cavalcade of Authors promo is coming this month, from October 13th through the 15th. Again, 200 books or more free for download. For this one, I’ve put Forged in Fire into the pot.

There’s also a single day event on October 27th, hosted by Stephanie Freeman. You can find more information on that and sign up here. For that event, you can grab free copies of The Chronicles of John Zebedee!

Posted by EASchechter in 2023 plans, 2024 plans, accountability, Balance of Power, contest, cover art, edits, forthcoming works, Heir to the Firstborn, John Zebedee, planner stuff, Planning, promotions, publishing, Revisions, Sable Locks, short story, The Sea Prince, The White Raven, upcoming books, upcoming work, Updatey things, why-the-writing-is-slow, WIP, wordcount, Written in Water, 0 comments


I have an electronic planner in my phone, but I remember things better if I write them down. So I use a paper planner. I like paper planners. I have one for homeschooling, one for day-to-day planning, and a travelers notebook that comes along with me. And I have a bullet journal, for whatever I’m currently writing.

My planner of choice is from Plum Paper.  This is my everyday planner, with bonus Pusheen and rainbows. Yes, stickers and washi tape are a huge part of my planning.

I like the formats and the customization available with Plum Paper. The sizes are great (the one pictured is 8.5 x 11), and the paper is wonderful (there’s no bleed through no matter what pens I use). I have a bunch of 5×7 Plum Paper notebooks, too. But I’ve discovered that, while the spiral bound notebooks are every bit as wonderful as the planners, the perfectbound Plum notebooks are not quite as robust as I’d like them to be. Which is very, since I need this to go in and out of my purse or my laptop bag. , and last for the length of the series I’m writing.


That little owl notebook is my notes and plans for Swords of Charlemagne, and this is the second perfect bound notebook I’ve killed because I’m rough on my things. Once again, I needed something to replace the bullet journal. Then I discovered the Paperdori from Plot your Work.

Plot your Work offers several different sizes of Paperdori. This one is holds three 5X7 inserts (which Plot your Work offers as well). And if you can see on the left, there’s a planner charm — you can choose your charm, and I chose a fountain pen nib.

For my three inserts, I used a dotted journal (for my bullet journal) and two of Plot Your Work’s single project planners (with awesome hand marbled covers!).  This ended up being much more than I needed — I probably could have gotten away with using one single project planner for the last two books in Swords of Charlemagne.

Because I have a pocket sized ‘dori, there are only 28 lines on a dotted page. So I had to kinda had to format my monthly calendars to fit. This is where I’ll log my wordcounts, and my word totals, and I’ll make note of any professional events that will be happening while I write. You can see Indie Bookfest listed on those pages.

In the single project notebooks, there are a mix of dotted pages and project planning specific pages. I’ve used these before in the full sized Plot Your Work planner, and I like how functional they are.

Now, why I said that I could have used one of these single project for both books? That page there is an entire year of planning.  It takes me four to six months to write a draft — so one of these single project notebooks would have fit both books left in Swords of Charlemagne. But I wasn’t thinking of that when I set things up, so I wrote in both. I’ll remember this for next time — the way I use these planners, I can fit two related books into one single project notebook.

So, consider this an enthusiastic two-thumbs-up for the Plot your Work Paperdori! Very functional, and they definitely over deliver!



Posted by EASchechter in Boosting the signal, planner stuff, Planning, product endorsement, 0 comments