Using Todoist to Help Write a Book

Having an organized checklist is a must for new and veteran authors

Amanda Mae

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Photo by George Milton on Pexels

I wrote my first book in kindergarten, a self-illustrated picture book my mother still treasures, and I’ve been writing ever since. I’ve written fan fiction, essays, newspaper articles on library events and resources, book reviews, and a few books that I’ve self-published on Amazon. I’m still a novice, but I’m learning quickly.

I’ve been participating in some collaborations with other authors in the particular genre I write, and I realized fast that I needed to get organized or I was going to fumble the opportunities. I created a template for Todoist that could at least get me started with setting the deadlines I needed to meet and help me plan for all the pieces I need to publish on Amazon. I create a new project for the book, and import my Book Project template so I can start to plan out what I will need for this new endeavor.

What the start of my Book Project Template on Todoist looks like

First, I need to know the publication date. This is my deadline. Amazon (or rather, their platform Kindle Direct Publishing or KDP) has you upload your manuscript 3 days before the intended publication date, but this is at least a date to work with and base your other deadlines off of.

Then, I need to pick my title, find cover art, create the cover, and come up with the basic story idea I’ll be writing. This helps me in the initial planning stages. In some of these collaborations, there is a designated cover artist, but they still need stock art by a certain date so they have time to create the covers.

Once I have my title set and a basic idea of the story, I write a blurb and begin to outline the plot. The blurb may shift, but I find that it helps to have a blurb in mind to help you stay on task when you’re writing.

All of these tasks have deadlines that are in my Todoist — my Todoist runs my life! Obviously, sometimes I need to add in additional tasks, or find that some aren’t necessary for a particular project, so needs will shift. But at least by starting with my template of the tasks that most frequently come up or have to be done…

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Amanda Mae

Amanda Mae is a librarian who has lived in too many states and enjoys anything involving books, history, and productivity.