The Writer’s Plan Guidebook

The Writer’s Plan is an easy-to-use system for creating your own plan for your writing career. This template takes into account well-known techniques and draws from the type of analysis performed for strategic, communications and marketing planning.

Creating your plan will initially take some time and careful thought. You will envision where you want to go, consider what will help or hinder you on your journey and determine how you will get there.

I’d like to emphasize that the success of any planning process is the regular evaluation of progress. Commit to review your strategies and tactics on a regular basis, record your accomplishments, assess what has or hasn’t been effective and revise where appropriate.

The Process

The planning process will follow ten steps:

  • Visioning your dreams
  • Analyzing your situation
  • Defining your product
  • Nailing down your audience
  • Sizing up the competition
  • Opening up your conduits
  • Determining your vision statement, objectives, strategies and tactics
  • Factoring in financials
  • Building your timeline
  • Evaluating your results

You may be wondering, how much time will this take? This plan can easily be put together in one week, or you can stretch it out over a month. I suppose a person could pull this together in a single day, with a one-day, one-person intensive planning session, however I do suggest spending a few days on the first four steps, beginning with the visioning, rather than trying to get it all done in one sitting. That way any hidden gems from your sub-conscious aren’t missed.

At the same time, spreading out the process over more than a month may result in a loss of focus and momentum, making the whole process seem larger and more tedious than intended. If this plan feels tedious, it’s not going to be used as a working, living plan. In all, creating this plan should only take a total of twelve hours.

There are three templates available to help you with your planning: Writer Business Plan, Writer Promotion Plan and Project Promotion Plan. I’ve separated out the project and personal promotion aspects from the objectives, strategies and tactics in the business plan to make your documents easy to read and reference. Also, you’ll notice that the layout of the plans differs from the order of the steps outlined here. These instructions follow an organic flow for working out the details of your plan, while the templates are structured to make the specifics easy to follow and review.