Time to Get Organised

When I started blogging and tweeting back in September I was not expecting the volume of emails that would follow.

I know that I have the power to switch off notifications or only receive blog post updates once a week. I could disable messages when someone follows/tweets me or sends a DM and I don’t have to receive updates on comments I make on other blogs.

But I want to receive these emails. I want to engage with other people and know when they’ve responded to my comments on their blog. I want to know when someone has ‘liked’ one of my posts or they have taken the time to comment on my blog.

I’ve gone from having a few emails a day from Amazon, iTunes and the like to dozens/100+ emails informing me of all the above.

If I don’t log into email on my laptop for a couple of days I have hundreds of emails to sort through. This is time I could be reading/writing. It might sound like I’m complaining, Β I’m not, but I felt like I needed a PA to help. πŸ™‚

Last week I started a new job (same employer, different team) and I set up some new folders in my email. I amended one of the rules so that my read receipts went into the new folder …


I got home and set up EIGHT new folders in my email and created NINE rules for forwarding blog comments and twitter messages etc.

I have my time back.

I still have the same number of emails to deal with, but I feel like I’ve organised my way out of a very time-consuming industry. I can keep track of everything with ease and concentrate on what I want to do.

Who was it that clicked like on that post? I have it right here.

Thank you RULES. I love you!

red heart, from leaf

I’ve tried to adopt this same principle for my writing. I received an extra calendar this year so I’ve hung it on the study wall. I’ll use it to keep track of my writing, work in progress, competitions etc.

I’ve always been more organised at work than I am at home. I want to take my writing more seriously so I will treat it more like a job and not a hobby. I don’t miss deadlines at work so I shouldn’t expect anything less from my writing.

2012 is time to get serious.

What do you do to get organised?

Thanks for reading.

About Pete Denton

I'm a writer working my way through the redrafts of a British crime novel. I also write short stories, flash fiction and some screen writing. Check out my blog for more.
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25 Responses to Time to Get Organised

  1. belleofmountains says:

    Schedules, calendars, and to-do lists completely swamp my desk. Yet, I never seem to be able to stick to them. πŸ˜€ How do you get yourself to stick to your deadlines?

    • Pete Denton says:

      I’m using the blogging to shame myself into doing things. I’m currently sat watching the Packers and Giants, checking out some blogs and re-writing some of chapter eight. Previously I would have just watched the t.v. so all this interaction is helping me do something, even if it’s just a little bit. I have done more than 2k words today and done a blog post so it’s working. Not as much as I’d like, but it is working!

  2. mutantbee says:

    I have a relatively big whiteboard that I use to organise my to-do lists and such … doesn’t really help me since I ignore what’s on it, but I’m at least trying to be more organised πŸ™‚

  3. So glad it’s not just me that’s disorganised – although this year I’m trying to get it all under control. I do love getting feedback to my blogposts and receiving notifications of new ones from those I subscribe to. It makes me feel ‘connected’ and spurs me on to write more but I’m afraid I do get distracted writing replies and following links …….like now, for instance! I’m in awe of your systems, Pete!

    • Pete Denton says:

      I know what you mean. The systems are there I just need them to work properly and not get me distracted. I’ll do that when I’ve found my Indian Head massage person πŸ˜‰

  4. lostingoodstory says:

    Hello Pete. Congrats on writing a novel even if you are frustrated at the time it has taken to come to fruition. You’re writing it and that’s pretty cool! I would like to know how to get the percentage bar that you have on your blog. I also am writing a book and would like to have a bar charting how many chapters I am through.

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks. I will finish the novel. I am determined. I’ve emailed you the code for the progress bar as I’m not sure whether it would post here. Let me know if you encounter any problems.

  5. Neeks says:

    Lately it seems hard to find the time to find the time to do anything. Great idea about setting up filters on the email, I hadn’t thought of that, thanks! Good luck with your novel and writing πŸ™‚

  6. Organization and I have never been very good friends. I stick to deadlines and that’s about it — everything else is pretty loose. Maybe I should tighten up — maybe I’d get more done!

  7. Jessica says:

    This is a great goal, one that I need to make for myself! I do want, this year, to get more serious with my writing, to, perhaps, make a career of it. I think to do that along with my other job of being a mom to two under two, I’ll need to get more organized and begin to treat this whole “hobby” thing a bit more seriously.

    p.s. Thanks for commenting on my post the other day! Glad to have found you online and look forward to reading more from you!

    • Pete Denton says:

      No problem. Thanks for visiting.

      Wow, two kids under two must be a energy drainer. I can see how getting more organised will help get more from your writing. Best of luck with everything πŸ™‚

  8. frasersherman says:

    Some sort of organization is invaluable. I’ve used notebooks, day planners and currently iCal. It does take time to learn the habit though.

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks for commenting.

      I always have a notebook with me and my wife bought me a couple of new ones as stocking fillers for Christmas. I plan on using a new book for each new project. The calendar in the study is getting used more and like you said the habit is going to be the best way to keep it organised.

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  11. Congratulations on your organizing achievement!! “Develop good habits. They make life easier.” (My training as a stenographer and executive assistant serves me well. Thank God!!)

  12. I have been thinking about Tweeting for a long time, but I am not sure. What does it give you as a person? Have that increased the amount of visitors to you blog? Is it fun? Tell me all about it, please, it might help me to make a decision.

    • Pete Denton says:

      I do like Twitter.

      I try not to tweet too many links to my blog, but I do get quite a few visitors from there. It is a great community and I have found a number of great blogs that I follow and loads of ebooks that I’ve downloaded or at least got the sample. I’ve had some discussions with people I would never have encountered otherwise.

      I’ve been on Twitter since September 2011 and have had a positive time so far πŸ™‚

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