Editorial Calendar

Deadlines are not one of my specialities. Don’t get me wrong, I do usually meet them but I’ve become the master of the (writing) sprint finish and starting this blog has done little to change that; it may have even encouraged it.

In the final days of the Zero to Hero Blogger Challenge (remember that, all that time ago), we were encouraged to develop an editorial calendar. Before then, I had no idea what one was. My blog posts and novel writing times all merged into one and I did what any self-respecting writer would do…made a coffee and watched the deadline whizz past. So, I  scribbled a few ideas down, congratulated myself on a job well done, and instantly forgot all about it.

After this week’s rather embarrassing last minute submission for a writing prompt that I created, I realised that something would have to give. I needed to take the time to set one up properly. I used my ‘almost’ calendar (read post-it notes on a paper diary) that I’d been working on since the challenge ended and started to brainstorm how it could work for me. I am well known for my ability to forget something that isn’t directly under my nose, so a spreadsheet-based calendar was out of the question. I’m equally useless with paper diaries, so that was them out.

In the end, I settled on an online calendar, synced to both my phone and PC. Using google calendar, I created one, completely separate from my personal and business ones, to be used solely for the blog. Each month, the intention is to plan potential blog posts for the following month. Nothing is set in stone (I’ve already move posts around and cancelled others until later dates) which helps to keep the blog fluid and dynamic. I have started to plan and fix in my Top Tip Tuesday and Flash Fiction Friday posts along with a number of anniversary and challenge posts (April A to Z Challenge).

I can’t believe I haven’t done this earlier. The calendar is helping to, not only, meet my writing deadlines but also keep me sane with planned and back-up posts should I start falling behind.

Now it’s your turn, do any of you use and editorial calendar for your blogs? How has this helped you manage your writing tip? And, do you have any tips for us newbies?

8 thoughts on “Editorial Calendar

  1. Having a regular ‘Friday’ post means that I have to have something ready for publication on my blog each week. I usually work on my Friday post earlier in the week and then schedule them to post on the required day.

    I have spreadsheets, calendars, diaries etc. dotted everywhere around my writing space. I actually quite like deadlines as it speaks to the structured way that I like to go about my writing.

    I guess it is just a case of everyone finding what works best for them; I’m glad that you’ve found yours! 🙂

    Heather xxx

  2. I have regular Monday, Wednesday and Friday posts, and having that certain schedule really helps to plan ahead. I love planning and lists, so it suits me well anyway, but I haven’t planned out actual posts. That’s good advice!

  3. I think having a schedule for regular posts would be too much pressure for me. As in, I couldn’t think of topics to write about. I just blog whenever I think of something or feel like it. 😀
    Calendar, schedule? What is that even?

  4. I’m useless with paper diaries as well. Last time I used them was quite a few years ago. I am lucky that not only all my publications have deadlines, but I also try to sit down every 1st of each month and decide what I’m going to focus on. I establish the minimum goal, and secondary ones in terms of writing. It helps me a lot, as well as having either given word count or establish them myself. I’ve done that for a bit more than a year and it’s helped me stay on top of things as I juggled with many projects.

    I don’t really have a blog calendar, though I’m trying to write at least every two days in it. When I have short blog series, one I’m currently doing now, I establish a schedule, but otherwise, I just keep notes of what I want I to blog about and pick in it to crack a few posts per week.

  5. I’m really glad to see a post on editorial calendars. Personally, I’m a huge fan of them for blogging. It’s probably because I use them a lot in my job, so it just made sense that it carried over to other things. I think the biggest thing for me is making sure I’m flexible and realistic about the deadlines. In my head I have all my posts separated into three categories… posts that I will always write on time, posts that I will definitely write (but maybe not quite on deadline) and posts that I would really really like to write on time, but if I pass one by I consider it cancelled and move the topic to some other scheduled post. Having it broken out like that helps me from getting too overwhelmed when everything else gets too busy. Anyways, good luck with your editorial calendar. Hope you find it useful 🙂

  6. I blogged for four years without any calendar or schedule on http://www.defrostingcoldcases.com/. I blogged when I had time or when there was a break in a case. However, with my second blog http://yourblogcoach.wordpress.com/ I am a tad more organized. The main reason behind that is my freelance blogging.
    I have split up my days according to what I need to do as a freelance blogger. Each day has a different dedication: clients, marketing, etc. Of course, I try to keep things flexible in case something pops up that has to be done right now. Maybe we should talk in a few months to see how we both experienced our calendars.

  7. Dang, color me educated. No clue any such thing as an editorial calendar even existed until right now. My blog post (and writing in general) planning has amounted to scribbles in my day calendar (paper; I’m old-fashioned like that) that I only look at when the deadline is long past. Editorial calendar: Guilie’s task for tomorrow. Thank you!

  8. I used to keep a calendar along with post-it notes and lists when I was an academic. Since retiring, I’ve found doing all that is the last thing I want to do…unfortunately. I’ve missed meetings on a regular basis, but somehow have managed to keep deadlines with regard to blogging and critiquing. Writing.. well, that has always been a thing that required the proper mental outlook. Luckily that’s not a problem. Do I need to keep my calendar again? Or can I just keep things in my head?

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