Posts tagged Write
I’ve already planned out my next book. I just don’t want to write it. I’d rather write something different.
It’s also July 1, Canada Day and the 143 Birthday of Canada. Plus it’s the 200th anniversary of the war of 1812. (I’m reenact the battle of Fort George with my scout troop).
So put it all together and I’ve got our first sale of the year … (maybe longer)
Announcing the “1812 + 200″ Sale …
To make up for the lack of spare time in my life, I’ve decided to make you a very special offer. Okay, actually I’ve got my next book planned out and ready to write … and frankly I don’t want to do it. Soooo ….
If you’ve been meaning to write a book and just haven’t gotten it done, this offer is for you!
I normally charge anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 for a ghostwritten book. But because this is the anniversary and it’s Canada Day and I want to do something different from what I normally write about. …
Get your own 100 page book written and formatted for Kindle for only $2012 U.S.
Okay I admit I’ve been standing too close to the cannons … but I want to write something different. This is a price that will never be repeated. (Especially if my accountant finds out — not to mention Paul ). And at this price I can’t do more than a few (like 1 or 2). But it’s your chance to get that book you’ve always wanted to boost your business. (And yes, you do own all the rights).
So what do you do if you want to write your own book?
I haven’t forgotten you either. Normally, we charge $5,000 U.S. to walk you through the process of writing your book, including planning the book, scheduling your writing time, help writing your book, editing your book, and helping with the formatting.
Get our hand holding service for only $2012 U.S.
So what happens if you’ve already got a book written?
Chances are you still need to format your book for the Kindle and for print. And you’ll still need a cover. We normally don’t do that for books we aren’t publishing through TrainingNOW. But if you paid someone else to do it you’d pay at least $300 to $400 ($90 – $200 for designing each).
Get our book design and formatting service for
only $201.20 U.S.
(Sorry, at this price we can only handle MS Word formatted books).
- At this price we can only accept a few orders … when we hit the limit we hit the limit.
- This is a time limited offer (expires July 7, 2012)
- Prepayment only (through PayPal).
- Hand holding service does not guarantee a book — only that
you get help and be held to account. If you don’t work you won’t succeed.
- Price is based on 250 words per page and 100 pages (i.e. standard double spaced manuscript format). We reserve the right to adjust the price for variation from that size.
- Ghostwriting service is for one revision only. Editing, proofreading and buyer changes are extra.
How to order?
Click here and send us an email. Tell me what you are interested in. Include your name, your email, and your phone number or skype id. (Skype id only outside of Canada & U.S. please).
And you could have your own book by August!
Why is motivation so important? Why do you — the writer — need to get motivated?
Okay, let’s start at the back end. I’m a little backwards so it’s appropriate. The answer is simple. Writing for the sake of writing is eating the cone and leaving the ice cream. It just doesn’t quite cut it. If you write, you want to be read. And when you get right down to it, reading is a purchase decision. You are buying the information even if the only thing you pay with is your time. And like anything else, people buy because they have an overwhelming desire for the benefits. In other words, they buy because they are motivated. If you know the detailed reason for that, you can write a book that fulfills that desire. Do so and you will be guaranteed an audience.
Okay, so obviously it has an effect when writing your book. It needs to show up in your subject matter. But how does it affect you when you are actually writing?
Have you ever heard the complaint, “I can’t seem to find the time to write?”
I know I do. It’s one of the most frequent complaints I hear.
There are three main reasons that writers have problems finding the time to write:
1. Writing is too hard
2. You’ve filled your time with other stuff
3. You aren’t motivated.
Motivation is one of the core success factors in writing a book. Writing a book is not like writing an article or an essay for school. Those are just sprints. Writing a book is a marathon. And you need to write the way you run a marathon.
No matter how good your writing system is. No matter how simple it makes the process of writing a book, writing will never be a simple task. It’s hard. Welcome to reality. Writers write because they have to. Very few write because they love the act. As Dorothy Parker, the American poet/writer/critic , said “I hate writing, I love having written.”
We always try to avoid doing things that are difficult. We’ll do whatever we can to avoid starting. That’s just human nature. In order to overcome this resistance, you need to have a very strong reason to overcome this. We just happen to call this reason “your motivation”.
Not only do you want to avoid starting difficult tasks, but also you’ll want to stop in the middle. No one wants to continue to bang his or her head against a wall. It tends to make a mess of both your head and the wall. And it leaves you with a headache. If something is hard to do, you’ll want to put it aside.
Knowing what motivates you and then making certain you are aware of that goal, will help you to overcome the difficulties involved in writing a book.
(Unabashed commercial time here: I’ll be writing some more on this topic over the next little while. If you don’t want to wait check out our 2 DVD course “Finding the Time to Write: Time Management for Writers” )
I’m ticked …
Notice my site … changed a bit hasn’t it.
Used to look consistent. Now … not so much. Used to be a mix-mash of traditional html, WordPress blog and forum. But at least it looked consistent.
Now not so much.
That’s not the least of it. I use WordPress to drive a number of sites that are part of the TrainingNOW family and a number of other companies (e.g. VProz) that I’m either involved in or otherwise have a relationship with (i.e. maintain). The problem is that WordPress broke all my sites in the last update.
Yes, I said broke my sites.
As a “former” techie, this ticks me off. But then again, I come from a platform that doesn’t EVER have legacy code in the way PCs do. Upgrade? Cool. But it had better not break what went before or it’s back to the drawing board. Which means there’s always new stuff to learn without unlearning the old. But that’s a heck of a lot easier than rewriting a million dollars in application code. (For the techies in the group, any html in pages was lost, workarounds around the menu stopped working around, and plugin options suddenly stopped the plugin from working. And oh yes, the theme I was using is no longer maintained so I couldn’t even keep the look consistent.)
But, since we’re all internet marketers here, I’m going to ignore the details and focus on the business effects.
Yesterday, was supposed to be a day of writing a new course. This week is turning into a write-off as appointments get in the way of producing. What was supposed to be a day of squeezing production between the appointments ended up being a day of fixing webpages. Including one that allowed my customers to download a product they had paid for. (At least it didn’t affect LearningCreators!). What really hurt was that this download was actually hit three times by the “changes”. No sooner did I fix one problem but another further down the stream appeared.
So what can we learn from this?
- Being able to download product is critical. (That means test it in full and fix it immediately).
- Don’t upgrade WordPress (or its plugins and theme’s) unless you have time to verify it hasn’t broken anything.
- If the pages need to appear consistent, then use WordPress for the whole site (not just the blog). Replacing a theme is easy. Replacing a theme and customizing it to look like your brand is not that hard. Replacing a theme and then customizing it to look identical to the html version is a major pain. (Technically, you can use a common CSS. But since WordPress has added improved Page handling, it isn’t necessary).
- Identify your critical processes (such as product delivery). Always have a backup ready to go at a moment’s notice. The backup should appear as transparent to the user as possible.
- Be flexible with release dates for product. Build in lots of time between completion and release. Then hope and work toward not needing that time.
- Watch the upgrade sequence. All themes and plugins should be upgraded shortly after a major WordPress release. If not, you need to check that they aren’t obsolete. If they are then you need to start the process of replacing them.
- Be flexible. Stuff happens. And always at the worst possible time.
- Don’t overcommit. You’re running a business (and have a life). That means you need to make appointments. But don’t let the number of appointments overload your ability to work on the business.
- Balance is needed in your business. Too much production and not enough marketing and you won’t sell. Too much marketing and not enough production and you won’t have enough product to sell. Too much production and/or marketing, at the expense of not enough administration and you could find yourself not being able to deliver what you sell. Or know what has sold and what you should produce. (Okay, I’m cheating here. This is actually something I’ve learned over the last six months. I just had it reinforced.)
- Project management rules are really business rules. The good habits that I’ve learned as a project manager are the same habits I need to remember as a business manager and entrepreneur. (Or vice versa)
Good luck with your business!
Welcome to the third and last of the series of free videos on “Finding the Time to Write”.
If you want more information on this topic, check out http://www.learningcreators.com/buyvideoa.htm. There you’ll find a 2 DVD home study course on this topic.
Now so far, we’ve covered the three areas that you need to focus on in order to “Find the Time to Write”. They form what I’ve called the Work Equation. Unless you balance them, you’ll never find the time to write your book. You’ll just go from one problem to another. You fix one problem and you find another reason not to write. Just because it’s a series of excuses doesn’t mean it’s your fault. It just means you haven’t solved the whole problem.
Next, we covered the solutions to the whole issue. This is what we need to do in those three areas in order to ensure that we solve the whole problem.
We need to:
- Motivate ourselves – and keep our motivation up
- Find 4 hours of time per week as a minimum
- Make it as quick and easy as we can to write
Motivate, Find the Time, Use a System. Do one and the problem will reoccur. Do all three and you’ll succeed.
Now today, I’m going to give you three tips — one in each area — to help you create your own system. By the way, these are different tips from those in the DVD workshop.
So let’s get started.
First off, you need to build your desire to write your book. To do that you need to motivate yourself just like you would for any other employee. And then, you need to sustain that motivation.
Picking the best motivation involves a number of models that I frankly don’t have time to show you in 5 minutes. In our two DVD course, we can go through the most important but in 5 minutes, there’s just not enough time. Sorry.
So my tip, instead, is going to focus on how to sustain your motivation. How to actually motivate you after you’ve chosen your motivations.
All of the windows operating systems – XP, Vista, and 7 can replace the picture you use behind your desktop. With Vista and 7, you can use a slide show. With XP, you need a tool you can download from Microsoft. If you use a Mac, you can also do a slide show.
Find yourself pictures that illustrate why you are writing your book. Find pictures that illustrate what is motivating you. Pictures that will inspire you. Then use a picture manipulation tool — Paint will even do the job — and add a phrase or sentence to drive the point home.
Then all you need to do is add the pictures as a rotating slideshow desktop.
Whenever you aren’t taking up the whole desktop with a program, you’ll see the reasons for writing. Even if you only see a part of the picture, it’ll help to focus your mind on your motivations to write a book.
Now the second part of the solution is that you need to find the time to write.
So how much time are you going to need?
At your most efficient, you can expect to write about 5,000 words in one morning. Now for most people, that’s also the most you can reasonably expect to write in a day. That means that for a 100-page book you’re going to need about five writing days or five four-hour blocks of time to write. Plus you’ll need a little bit for research and planning. But that you can squeeze in anywhere. We’re talking an hour here, an hour there.
Once you’ve eliminated all the time you waste, you may find that you still can’t get enough time to write a book. So try hiring a temporary worker to take on one of your tasks. Writing your book is presumably worth more than the ten or twenty bucks you’ll spend on getting your lawn cut. Or on babysitting or on cleaning the living room. Check out your local high school. They sometimes have students who are looking for spending money. Or even work-terms. Having a research assistant for free, may help you finish your book sooner.
The third part of the solution is a little more complex. It’s the system you use to write. It’s more complex because it includes the writing processes but also your environment and your work habits.
Your environment has a major effect on how fast you can write. But sometimes it’s good to slow things down – slightly. This preparation time can help you to focus yourself on your writing. That’s part of the reason you should always edit your previous day’s writing before you begin today’s writing.
Creating a ritual — any ritual — will also help. It doesn’t have to be complex. In fact, simple and fast is better. But it says to your brain — “It’s time to write now.” For example, checking my backpack to be sure my computer, my notebook and my pens are in the backpack is part of my ritual. Even though it’s done about fifteen minutes (or more) before I write. It helps me to prepare.
To create a ritual you need to do something the same way, every time. That causes your brain to link the steps. And that means that one of those steps needs to be writing. So when building the ritual you absolutely MUST produce some writing. The second sub-tip is that it takes roughly 28 repetitions to create a ritual or habit.
Okay that’s the end of the video course. I hope you found it interesting and useful. Thank you for your time and attention.
If you want more information, you can always check out the blog. However, we also have a 2 DVD home workshop that covers the information in these three videos in much greater detail. Now this home video workshop is essentially the same information we had in our full day live workshop. We’ve even included the same exercises that we used. We’ve just called them homework. So this is over two and half hours of pure information. Plus guidance developing your own responses — your own customized solution. We walk you through the entire process. From identifying where you are weak to choosing where you are going to write. And everything in between.
You can find out more information by going to http://www.learningcreators.com/buyvideoa.htm
“The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work“
Emile Zola (1840-1902) French artist and philosopher
Welcome to the second in our series on “Finding the Time to Write”.
Now in the last session we discussed the real problem that we have. We cover it up by calling it “Not enough time to write” or some such excuse. Let me be clear here. I’m using the word excuse here because it focuses on a symptom or a solution. Unless we focus on the real problem, we won’t be able to solve it. What’s the real problem? The real problem is simply “Not being able to get our book written”.
Examining that problem led us to the Work Equation. When that equation gets out of balance then we can’t get any writing done.
Cool so far?
Okay, in the next six minutes or so of this session we’re going to talk about identifying a solution to our problem.
So how do you get the Work Equation back into balance? How do you make sure that you are really going to write?
The answer is that you need to deal with all three elements of the work equation. Doing just one won’t cut it. That’s why you get the usual advice that just doesn’t seem to work. It’s not that it’s wrong per se. It just doesn’t work because it focuses on only part of the problem.
Yes, the solution is personal. My solution won’t work for you and your solutions won’t work for me. That’s fine. And yes, you can make poor decisions and poor choices. It’s unlikely given the problem but you can do it. Nevertheless, it’s not you.
The advice you usually get won’t work for anyone … except in a few unusual cases. It’s the advice itself that’s wrong.
In the last session, I gave the three most common versions of advice that are used to fix the problem of not being able to write a book. You’ll notice that “Figure out why you’re writing” and “Visualize the result” are focused on building the desire to write. “Just get it done” is focused on the system. Okay, I’m being generous here. Some people just like being cantankerous. But I’m going to give them the benefit of the doubt. I’m going to focus on the positive here and presume they are talking about following a particular system.
The fourth most common piece of advice I didn’t really mention last time. It is usually referred to as building time management skills. This is focused on the ‘available time’ part of the equation.
And that’s why they don’t work. They’re all attempting to fix all of the problem by only fixing part of the problem. And since they don’t fix the whole — something else just goes wrong. You get past that bump and run into a wall.
So how do we deal with the whole? How do we fix the whole problem?
That’s where the three elements come in.
Now the first element is Desire. To build that up we need to focus on motivating ourselves. No different than any other employee. Just part of being a manager. We have to work too. We’re employees too. So you need to manage yourself. And part of that management is to keep yourself focused and interested in producing. In other words — motivated.
Now there’s two parts to motivation. The first is to figure out what will motivate you. “Figure out why you’re writing” as the guru said. Not entirely bad advice, just incomplete. The second part is that you need to continually reinforce the motivation. Motivation fades with time. It’s not a one-time effort. You need to continually motivate yourself.
The second element is Time. Let’s get practical here for a second. If you don’t have at least four hours to write per week, you’re never going to finish. Sorry. Even at four hours a week, you’re going to have a problem maintaining your motivation over the two months it will take to write a short 100-page book. So you need to find the time. And that means you may have to adjust your current schedule.
Look, we’re all busy today. I don’t know anyone who can just sit around for four hours a week. Or anyone who has a spare 24 hours to spend in a week. If you want to write, you’re going to have to become more efficient and more effective with your time. You’re going to have to steal minutes from other tasks.
Finally, the third element is actually three separate elements we can combine into one. Overall, I call it “The Effort Involved”. The solution to that piece of the pie lies in what we term your writing system. Now, I’m changing hats here for a second and talking from a Process Analyst point of view here. That’s why the “We”. It’s plural not royal. Okay? A system — any system — consists of process, environment and agents. How you write is the process. You’re the agent in this case, so we’re really talking about your work habits. And by environment, we’re talking about where you write. Mix them together and you have a writing system.
And your writing system determines how long it will take you to write and how easy it will be.
So the solution to finding the time to write is really a combination of Motivation + System + Stealing Time from your busy day.
Now here’s the kicker. You’re going to have to determine the details of the solution yourself. Why? Because it needs to be customized for you. What works for me won’t work for you. What works for you won’t work for me.
However, there are commonalities … ideas that I can share from which you can pick and choose exactly what you will use. And that’s what the next session will be about.
I hope you enjoyed this session and that you found it useful. In our next and last session, I’m going to give you three practical tips to help you develop your solution to the problem of finding the time to write. And I’ll also have a very special offer for you.
Next & Last Session – Due Friday!
Welcome to a five minute presentation by LearningCreators. This is the first of three presentations on this topic. So what’s the topic?
It’s probably the most common problem my customers complain of … Finding the time to write.
Everyone has a slightly different cut on the problem … “I don’t have the time to write because I work all day” or “I have to get my kids to school and soccer and football and … ” or maybe it’s a matter of “I don’t want to start because I’m not sure people will want to read it”.
But there’s one common theme throughout this …
And that tells me there’s a problem.
You see there’s a problem with problem solving. And providing excuses is a symptom of that problem.
In order to solve any problem, you need to be solving the real problem. You need to solve the problem that’s underlying the stated problem. You need to drive down to the core of the issue.
In North America especially, we have a tendency to state problems in terms of one particular solution. And we have a tendency to focus on symptoms and panaceas rather than looking at actual causes and actual solutions. But that doesn’t help to cure problems. In fact, it leaves us chasing solutions to one symptom after another.
And that means if you look around you’ll find all kinds of “solutions” to the time problem. Everyone has a solution to finding the time to write.
For some gurus it’s “Figure out why you want to do this and that’ll carry you through”. All you need is to do is build up your desire.
And then there’s the new agey gurus “Visualize the result if you do it and magic will happen.” They believe that if you dream it hard enough the universe will just magically make it happen.
And then there’s always the disciplinarian in the bunch who says, “Shut up, sit down, write. And stop cryin’ about it.” They don’t exactly give you a lot of latitude in fixing the problem. But that’s okay ’cause they don’t exactly give you a solution either.
The problem with all those solutions is they don’t seem to work.
You try one solution after another and they just don’t sustain you. You still haven’t got the time to write.
So you go on and you try someone else who says basically the same thing in different words, and guess what. It still doesn’t work.
So you start thinking it’s your fault… or you give up entirely. Well, guess what?
It isn’t your fault.
You have a problem and no one has bothered to help you solve it. You need to know the real problem if you’re going to solve the problem. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today.
So what’s the real problem?
You want to write a book or create a course or whatever … but … it never seems to happen.
Well duh … I know it sounds really silly and simplistic. That’s because it is.
No one said the problem had to be hard. It just has to be the real problem and not a symptom or a solution.
The problem isn’t that you don’t have the time. The problem is that you want to write a book or create a course and it isn’t happening. You can’t seem to build the energy to start and finish it.
One potential solution is that you need to find the time. But it’s only one solution. And that means that even if you find the time you’ll may never actually finish your book. Why? Because you’ve fixed the symptom not the problem.
We need to get further in behind the problem . We need to explore the situation a little deeper.
It turns out that how much writing you do is a combination of five elements.
- Your desire to write
- The amount of time you spend
- How hard it is to write
- How quickly you can start
- How effective you are at writing
You can combine the last three together to make things a little bit easier to understand and work with.
We call the result the Work Equation.
The amount of work you get done is proportional to
- The effort involved in writing
- Your desire to write
- How much time you have to write
If you aren’t writing, you’ve allowed one of the elements to overload the function. Something — we don’t know what — is out of step with the rest of the function. The result is that you aren’t getting anything done. And you aren’t going to get anything done until you get all the elements into alignment.
So what’s the solution?
Well that’s the topic of our next 5 minute presentation. I hope you’ll join us again in for the next presentation. I hope you’ve found this presentation has helped you get a better handle on your own problems finding the time to write. And that you’ll join us for the rest of the presentations.
Next Session – Due Thursday!
One of the biggest problems that writers face is having to sell their book after they’ve written it.
In fact, selling your book afterward is probably one of the worst things you can try to do.
What? Am I crazy … what in heaven’s name am I trying to spout here. After all, the whole point of writing is to be read and without selling your book you won’t be read!
No I’m not crazy. In fact, you do need to sell your book. But you need to start the process before you even begin to write. In fact the first thing you should be doing is to identify who is going to read your book and why.
Once you’ve written your book (and incorporated your reader’s hot buttons), edited and refomatted your book it’s time to actually get out there and sell it.
Selling on the internet is actually pretty simple in theory. You drive traffic, give them something in return for their email, use emails to build a relationship and then along the way sell your book (or other product including audio, video, CD, DVD, webinars etc.).
In practice, however, building that initial list is a lot more difficult than it seems.
Now I’m the last person to claim that I’m an expert marketer. And while I can speak to it and teach people about it — I think you can do much better than myself (even if you can at least trust what I have to say). Unfortunately, to build my own business I’m sort of forced to become an expert marketer.
So how did I become an expert (internet) marketer?
Well, I started out by taking a number of courses. But eventually I reached a point where I realized I needed a coach. Someone who could help me get ahead using this distribution channel. After a fair amount of research I settled on a chap by the name of Sean Mize. Sean came with three key ingredients … he actually was able to build a business on the internet from scratch (most started from web design companies), he produced his own training materials (most outsource both coaching and course development) and he told the truth (press a button and get tons of traffic isn’t his style). And to boot he was the number 1 author on EzineArticles.com.
So why am I telling you all this?
I’ve arranged with Sean to make his courses on internet marketing available to you my loyal subscriber. The first of these is his List Building MP3 Series. This is a 10 MP3 training course that will turn you into a list building machine. Plus there are bonuses!
If this sounds like something you might need check it out here!
I’m writing this around midnight. In fact, I even had to reschedule some posts to squeeze this post in. But it was such a day that I just had to write about it.
Up here in the frozen north we’re supposed be cold and living in igloos year round.
Well, it just ain’t so folks!
It’s midnight and the temperature is still at 28°C (that’s 83°F for you southern folks)! 66% Humidity makes the temp feel 10° higher (meaning it feels like it’s 38°C/100°F). That’s at midnight! This afternoon it hit 38°C/100°F officially (hottest spot in the area was 40°C/104°F and it felt like 50°C/122°F). It’s been like this all week and in fact it’s supposed to get worse!
So much for it being cold up here!
My poor son has been in summer school this month … and the school administration in its wisdom has decided to turn off the air conditioning. As a result he ended up home today with heat stroke (amongst other issues).
Now theoretically, I’ve got the perfect solution to the heat. I’ve got air conditioning in the house. I’ve got air conditioning in the car. And I’ve got a pool! You’d think I’d be all set.
But noooooo …
Fortunately, A/C in the house is still working — touch wood and whistle. But the A/C in the car has died … (actually I think it’s overloaded and can’t handle the heat. It was working last week).
And the dang-blasted, pain in the butt, pool has turned green from the heat! The scary thing is that I’ve been feeding it double the usual amount of chlorine. And it’s been shocked to the point where it’s shooting off electricity!
So since I really would like to get some use out of this money sink, I decided to shock it once again.
I’m now down one more pair of pants and a nice shirt. Damn chlorine! And it wasn’t even done when I was adding it … I got chlorine on them when I was carrying the empty containers!
Okay, so what’s the point to all this ? I mean other than the fact I wanted to bitch about the fact that I’m running out of clothes! And yes, I did want to blow off steam! (I’m so ticked I can’t even type!)
There is this tendency for the “gurus” in internet marketing to blow smoke. You know what I’m talking about. The promises of easy wealth and fast returns. All promised of course, in front of their multi-million dollar homes and $500,000 dollar cars! Just send them $5.097 and they’ll show you how in three easy lessons!
Okay, folks let’s get a couple of things straight here. I’m going to throw my credit counselor’s hat on here (I have an insolvency councilor’s diploma on my wall — along with a bunch of other sheepskins) and try to give you some straight talk.
First, creating an internet business is no different than creating any business. It’s a lot of hard work and it takes time. It also takes knowledge! It doesn’t happen with the snap of your fingers. And it involves a heck of a lot more than 1 hour a day. As for the knowledge, I’ve made arrangements with my own coach to make available a number of courses that will give you all the knowledge you need to sell over the internet. And over the next few months, we’ll be releasing a number of our own courses that will teach you everything you need to know about producing your own products (audio, video, live and book). And along the way we’ll even talk about administration and running your business.
Second. spending your income on big houses and big cars is just plain dumb. Okay, yes, I know many of you have convinced yourself that’s what you want. You’ve used that dream to motivate yourself. But the reality is a little different.
The truth is the big advantage of a successful, advice/learning business is freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from threat. Freedom from the worry about your next paycheck or where the money is going to be to pay the next bill.
Warren Buffett is one of the five richest people in the world (actually he and Bill Gates trade the top 2 spots). Yet he lives in a modest two story home and drives a Cadillac DTS. Why? ‘Cause that’s all he needs.
And that should be your own philosophy. Cars and homes are money sinks — they cost, they don’t earn. So don’t spend any more on them than you have to. Certainly, you should buy what you need. But conspicuous consumption for the sake of consumption is not a path you really want to go down. Trust me … ask the people I refer and the trustrees that I refer them to! Not a good habit to get into. You don’t have to be poor to be bankrupt. And you don’t have to have money to put on a show.
The point I’m making here is that when an internet guru goes “Look, here’s my multi-million dollar mansion. Look, here’s my $400,000 Ferrari.” then you should be putting on your hip waders.
After all, just because there’s a luxury car rental down the street from him, doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to buy that Koenigsegg Trevita you’ve had your eye on.
Me, I’ve got five kids, my wife and I to squeeze into my Caravan tomorrow! And the blasted air conditioner is still going to be broken, ’cause I ain’t got the time to get it fixed. Try that with a Bugatti Veyron.
Do you remember when I discussed the most important item in your office I mentioned off hand that it was you?
Well, I wasn’t being entirely silly. Just mostly.
You see, any advice I or anyone else, gives you needs to be filtered through your own needs. The way I write has been developed through years of cubicle living. The way another writer writes will have been developed through their own experience. The thing is, we aren’t going to live in your office — you are. So you need to make it your own.
And no that does not mean put up pictures of the spouse and kids — not that that isn’t a good idea.
Each of us will have our own source of inspiration. When I wrote fiction, many years ago, one of my main sources was the local coffee shop. I’d go sit in a chair by the window and watch the people who came in and the people who walked by. From the homeless person who was convinced Sheena of comic book fame was his daughter. To the blingster with the two “ladies” on his arm and his BMW. Now that I write non-fiction “how to” books, my inspiration comes from a yellow, legal pad and a topic map. Or at least a mindmap. And coffee shops are for business meetings and buying high end coffee beans for my home espresso machine.
You also need to determine how and where you will write best through each of the stages of creation (inspiration, selection, consolidation) and through the physical writing.
Do you need silence when you write? Or do you need people around you? Can you handle interruption or do you need to concentrate? Will the other people in your life accept your lack of response or do you need to warn them they won’t get a reply or do you need to remove yourself altogether?
Are you organized when you write? Or are you a messy writer? Do you need a large area to display your book plan or just a piece of paper beside you?
These questions need to be answered before you can determine where your writing office will be.
Do you need a seperate office? Do you need an office in the living area of your house? Would the local coffee shop or library do the job? Do you need both or all? Will your needs change during the creative and writing tasks?
Once you have answered these questions you can determine the location and nature of your office. And your office will truly be your office.
In the last post I talked about the most important item in your office. This post will be about the second most important item. And just as in the last post it is a key to your future comfort.
The second most important item in your office is the computer monitor.
While your monitor won’t cause physical problems like your chair could. It can cause headaches and other issues which are almost as debilitating. Fortunately, the cost for even a great monitor is much lower than that of the chair.
The key again is to chose the monitor that is best for your needs.
One way to choose is to select the largest LCD monitor you can afford, then buy one size down from that. Why? Because even with LCD monitors there is a loss of sharpness as the screen size increases.
However, a much better method is to view various monitors from the same position and the same angle (and under the same lighting conditions) as you will have in your office. Then select the one that is the sharpest and easiest on the eyes.
In any case, you want to select an LCD monitor which is sharp at the distance you will be reading it. And you want the monitor which makes reading the easiest.
Again, you’ll be spending 4 hours a day (at least) looking at this monitor. Your eyes will thank you if you pick the right monitor.