I’m deep in the throes of finishing up The House in Audley Street, working like a demon towards that September release. And this time, I’m flying solo. It’s not a practice I recommend. I would generally say that she who is her own editor has a fool for a client. But circumstances, schedules, and time frames have done their worst, and here I am.
I got over organization and time management schemes a long time ago. I track my progress with sticky notes and a white board, but I’m on the very last steps of what has been a very long project.
Enter the Pomodoro technique. When I became so bogged down that I went whole days without writing or correcting anything, I knew I had to do something. Somebody had told me about a time management method where you set a kitchen timer for 25 minutes, work through that, and then take a 5 minute break. Then back to the salt mines for another 25 minutes. After three of those, you take a longer break. There’s a lot more to it than that, but that’s the gist.
I remembered seeing this somewhere before, but where? Well, it was back when I was considering remodeling or redecorating my apartment to suit my new, wobbly, and limping state. I read a book called Unf*ck Your Habitat by a woman named Rachel Hoffman. She’s an advocate of breaking insurmountable tasks down into small bits. And indeed, my habitat was unf*cked and made accessible with the help of some able-bodied folks and an approach that involved breaking big things down into manageable hunks.
So, I’m happy to report that with the aid of tomato-y goodness, Darcy and Elizabeth are hurtling towards their happily ever after, and I’m pretty content with my progress. I’m no longer keeping Free Cell open in another window–instead, my outline and characters are there. And we can look forward to the grand debut this September.
Oh, and I don’t use a red plastic tomato. I use my Amazon Echo. Alexa is perfectly happy to do this stuff all day.