Productive Freelance Writing: What is it?

Recently  have been analyzing my productivity, and I have been trying to figure out ways to make the most of my time. I have been debating about what counts as “productive activity” and what doesn’t. There are several things that I spend a lot of time doing, and I feel that each of these things is important. I am still working on which category of activity should be given the most attention.

Writing. Granted, actual writing is the most immediate and direct way to earn money. The issue is that there is so much more to the writing business, and some of it is time consuming. It has always been my goal to write as much as possible everyday, but I find that the following tasks get in the way sometimes:

Communication. I paid attention to how many emails I received yesterday, and how many I responded to. I only got about 50 emails, and about half of them needed a reply. The rest were notifications on payments, receipts, new assignments, Twitter follows, etc. I probably check my email too often, but sometimes I have urgent issues, like clarifying something with a client or an assistant, and this takes time.

Marketing. I bid on projects and Tweet. I am working on an article marketing effort, but it always gets pushed further down on my to do list. I am hoping to spend a little more time marketing so that I can attract more clients without bidding. I can use more marketing time.

Bookkeeping. I have to stay on top of money coming in and going out. It really takes time, though. Every time I get a payment or make a payment I record it immediately. Could I schedule a time, say twice a week or so, to do bookkeeping? Yes. Would that work better? I’m not sure.

Planning and scheduling. This is sort of a catch 22. It takes time to plan and schedule, but I can’t stop planning and scheduling or nothing will get done. I do feel that I over plan and rethink my plans too much. I should create a plan and stick to it. I also have to be really flexible because things come up all of the time.

Creating passive income sources. Writing for paid content websites, writing private label rights articles and other passive income methods are pretty low on my to do list. I would really like to take more time to establish these resources, but it will take a lot of time and planning. Passive income is actually not that “passive” in the beginning.

All of these activities are important to the freelance writing business, yet a majority of it is not writing. Amazing, isn’t it? Productivity as a freelance writer includes all of the above activities, but it is important to balance these responsibilities and prioritize them.

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