Writing to a Production Schedule


Last post I said that my goals for the next twelve months was to write seven books. But that really wasn’t pushing myself much was it? I’ve now upped that to twelve. So that’s my new goal – one book per month. These books probably won’t be full-sized. More like novella length (20,000-40,000 words).

The only way to achieve a goal as lofty as that, is to have a plan and get writin’.

My first is finished and in editing. I’ll send it to my beta reader on Monday, and if all goes to plan it should be published within the week after that. August book – DONE.

I’ve already started September’s book. 6,000 words in. I’ll make that deadline too. Bam!

How am I achieving this?

I made myself a Production Schedule. And I’m sticking to it.

  • August – Book 1 (finished, in editing)
  • September – Book 2  (started)
  • October – Book 3

and so on …

All books already have titles. All books already have covers. (I went on a bit of a pre-made cover buying spree).

All books just need to be written.

No excuses. I have a schedule now, and damn it, I’m gonna hit it.

Bring on Christmas sales … Oh yeah.

How to Make a Writing Production Schedule

Plan a full twelve months ahead

I suggest making your  production schedule twelve months long. Trad publishers have publishing schedules that are years in advance, so twelve months is nothing. Most indie’s don’t think much past the next book. They write something and then get hung up on that books sales. If you have more in the pipeline, one book doesn’t mean so much because you’ll be busy starting the next. That way you can get on with what is going to make the most money – having more product.

Find your writing triggers.

In deciding your schedule for the next twelve months, you need to have an idea of what you are going to write, or you need to have something that will trigger ideas for you, otherwise you’ll finish one book and have no clue what you are writing next. I’ve got full titles and covers ready to go. That’s my trigger.

Your trigger might be a whole 12 book series. Or perhaps a set of characters. Or maybe you like working to titles, too? Work out how best you come up with ideas and use that to your advantage.

Productivity Hacks

I’m slightly obsessed with productivity and finding ways to do things in the shortest amount of time possible. I have to be, since I don’t have the luxury of eight spare hours a day to write. It’s rare that I have peace and quiet at my house.

Two days a week I’ve put my youngest in childcare, and the hours she is away, as well as my older child in school, I spend as much time as I can at the computer. I have roughly five kid-free hours. I spend four of them writing. I’ve been having a lot of success with the pomodoro technique. 25 mins writing, 5 mins rest. Repeat four times. Have a longer break for  lunch then go again.

I’ve increased my word count to around 6,000 words in 4 hours doing this. Find out how YOU work best and stick to it.

Will a Production Schedule help you make more money as a writer?


Not directly of course, but if you follow a plan of writing more, two things will happen. One is that you’ll have more product on the market, and the second is that ‘time in seat’ or ‘time writing’ will help improve your writing skills.

I’m firmly of the belief that you get better by writing more. I don’t think you get better by obsessively rewriting the same story over and over (it might make you good at self editing though ;)). But each story you write helps you learn about characters, plotting, pacing and so on.

And I’m also firmly of the belief that the more books you have, the easier it is for people to find you (visibility!) and buy your other work if they like it, and therefore, the more money you’ll make.

Start today

Christmas and the new year is the biggest e-book buying season. Have you made plans to get more books out before then? It’s only four months away. Start today, start a production schedule, and get writin’.

Tracey :)




  1. says

    Impressive – you go girl! I think parents are naturally better at organising themselves than the rest of us! I must admit for the last since I picked up some well-paid freelancing writing I haven’t even looked at my books!

  2. says

    Wow – 12 books in 12 months, that is some schedule. I am sure that you will be able to get it done!

    As you have already got the book titles and book covers, are they all part of one series or are they completely different genres?

    Good luck and Happy Writing :)

  3. Tracey says

    Thanks everyone!
    I’m really excited about this goal – it’s got me pumped to achieve it, and has made writing more fun.
    August book goes live tomorrow. Then I need to finish writing September’s book.
    @Victoria – all the same/similar genre’s (contemporary romance, new adult, and erotic romance) under one pen name, but all stand alone books (no series).

  4. says

    I actually just did the same thing. I decided to do a production schedule instead of a publication schedule. So my goal is produce either a new novella each month or a novel every two months! So as long as I’m producing new material on that schedule I’m meeting my goals. Publishing will be different with each work because it all depends on when my betas are available to read it! Thanks for sharing!!

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