Thursday, December 29, 2011

Be A Better Boss, Writer

Maybe you aren’t meant to be a boss. You might stink being in charge. Have you considered that? Being the boss, the one to make decisions, that always sounds great. I was a boss once and I remember thinking that I would make changes, do the things I always wanted to do , make a difference.

I was terrible.

I was unprepared to manage all the details and I had less power than I thought while at the same time, I had too much freedom; I could plan my days, but because there was so much to accomplish, I tended to start and then not finish projects on time. It was a time management issue.

Most of us are too used to having other people tell us what to get done and when it needs to be finished. Yes, there is more to being a boss than just time management, but I would say that it is the, or at least a, fundamental skill that must be mastered in order to succeed.

To be a writer (one not employed by a company that is), a person has to assume the role of boss. The trouble is, as I said above, maybe you aren’t meant to be a boss. Now, I’m not saying, folks that you can’t write or be a writer just because you have poor managerial skills. What I’m saying is that full-time, productive and successful writing might be beyond you.

As it is beyond me.

My real job, my paying, 9-5 job, I get generous time off- almost six weeks every year and every third week i get four days off in a row. That means I have plenty of time to write, or in theory I do, except for that time management issue I mentioned. I took a month off from this blog, and that folks, makes me a bad boss.

But I’m not alone. I see it all the time from writers, the ones like me who are not established, not rich, not household names. We take too much time off, we allow schedules to be dictated to us, rather than making the schedules for ourselves, the schedules that make sense, that replicable on a daily basis.

Successful writers need to recognize that they are the boss and then plan accordingly.

Be a better a boss, be a better writer.

That’s my plan for the New Year; my mantra for success. How about you?


Julia Rachel Barrett said...

Yeah, you're right. I do love to be the boss, but oh, the responsibility.

Right now I'm not even the boss of me. Kind of frustrating. Ah well.

MT Nickerson said...

I'm always a bit off around the holidays and I agree, it is frustrating, but hey, there's a new year approaching, right?

Dawn Lennon said...

A terrific post! You're spot on. I was effective as the boss and disciplined as an author...there's pain and gain in both, whether we're good or bad at either. I love the connection you've made here and your prose is wonderful. Thanks. ~Dawn