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March 04, 2015

Organization Tips



Bloggers and writers can suffer from many forms of insecurity. They can even be insecure about their lack of organizational skills. Have you ever misplaced an important document/email or forgotten about a guest post? Have no fear...Chrys Fey is here! I have 10 tips that you can implement right now!

1. Blogger: Create a separate folder on your computer in the “My Pictures” folder and label it “Guest Photos.” This is where you’ll store the pictures your blogging guests send you, such as their bio photo and cover art.

2. Blogger: Create another folder on your computer but this time under “My Documents” and label it “Guest Posts.” This is where you’ll store the interviews and guest posts that you need to schedule on your blog.
TIP: You can add another folder for author media kits that contain all the information about the author and their book.
3. Blogger: While you’re at it, create a folder in your email to file every single email from your blog guests to keep track of them. Then delete them after their post goes live.

4. Author: Same thing...designate different folders in your email to keep your correspondences with editors, beta readers, and agents together. I have folders for query submissions, rejections, and one titled “Tour.” Whenever I orchestrate a blog tour for myself, all the emails I send out and receive from participants go into this folder.

5. Author: As soon as you have all the information for an upcoming release such as the blurb, excerpt, and buy links, fashion a .DOC file or “media kit” with this information. Include your bio and author links. This is what you’ll send to bloggers during your blog tour, or anyone else who needs this information.

6. Blogger/Author: List all of your blog and/or story ideas in a .DOC file or notebook, so you won’t forget any of them.

7. Author/Writer: Put together a binder with several tabs. Label the tabs with things like: queries, agents, publishers, etc. to help you organize your research and stay on top of your submissions. I’ve done this for years!

8. Blogger If you do a lot of blogging, use a calendar to jot down your blogging schedule, especially when you’ll have a guest. This will also help you know which post to publish when if you write ahead like I do.

9. Author: You can also use a calendar for your blog tour. I love doing this! First, it’s easy to schedule your tour stops when you can look at a calendar and fill in each stop as they get approved. Also, when the dates come, the calendar acts as a reminder so you can visit each blog in time for your guest post.

10. Author: If you have a lot of responsibilities, get a binder and a bunch of tabs. You can label the tabs with things like: newsletter, giveaways, street team, website, promo ideas, etc. This will allow you to plan things out ahead of time and you won’t have to worry about misplacing something.


If you’re a writer/blogger, being organized is crucial to your work. Use these tips (I do them all!) or adapt them to your needs, and you won’t be insecure about organization anymore. I promise!


QUESTIONS: Are you an organized person or a hot mess? ;) How do you stay organized?


118 comments:

Vanessa Morgan said...

I should delete files when they're no longer useful. I don't know why I'm still keeping those ;-)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Great tips. I do a lot of those, except for the emails. I just flag those.
I do maintain a detailed calendar for blogging, especially since I'm posting at three public blogs and a couple private ones. Plus everything for my upcoming Dragon tour is in a Word document and ready to go.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I'm relatively organized but I don't keep up with my systems the way I should/want to. I'm always looking for new and better ways to make things work. Thanks for the tips!

SK Anthony said...

Gosh I love organizing. These are awesome. I have planner, calendar, and folders systems. Not binders but notebooks with colored tags and highlighters, etc. Cool post! :D

Sarah Foster said...

Great tips! Especially since I'm trying to get more organized. I do use a blogging calendar, though. I love #7. I'll have to do that once I start sending things out.

Chrys Fey said...

Clearing them out will give you more space and less clutter. Out with the old! ;)

Chrys Fey said...

I figured you'd be organized, Alex. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

You're welcome, Madeline!

Chrys Fey said...

So do I!:D I have a planner, too. I love it! :D

Chrys Fey said...

Getting organized cuts down on stress. My submission binder was the first one I ever put together. :)

Unknown said...

yup I've been doing the calendar thing for upcoming guests--helps a ton, since I always tell myself "oh I'll remember" but I never will! I'm def organized...I'd get nothing done if I didn't plan a ton :)

Lisa Thomson said...

I like to think I'm organized but actually paperwork gets out of control fast for me! My Beau is super organized (he's a Virgo) and he just shakes his head when he watches me rifle through dozens of files looking for ONE piece of paper. So, I need to work on this. Great suggestions, Chrys. I have a large binder for my legal shit I have going on. My writing files are all in folders (not the best). I'm a huge fan of flash cards for writing blog ideas, notes and my fiction. So, those are everywhere. Once I use it they get torn up and thrown away. e-files get out of control fast too.

Short answer? I'm a hot mess.

Chrys Fey said...

Organization is cool! :)

Chrys Fey said...

You could get a little basket for your desk to put your flash drives/cards in. :)

I also have a folder for my legal shit ;) and medical stuff. I guess you can say I'm super organized.

Pat Hatt said...

My ocd keeps everything in check pretty easily. So nice at times haha

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I do keep the emails until a blog is posted but I don't make a separate folder for them. I keep my planner on my desk and make sure I write stuff down immediately when I schedule a guest. So far, it works for me but I might incorporate some of your ideas.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I have hundreds of Word document files and several binders to organize everything.

Kai Strand, Author said...

It's like we're the same person! I use the folder method for organizing pictures/posts/emails that you suggested. Works so well.

Happy March!

Tamara Narayan said...

Wow, you really have it together. Your list both impressed me and gave me a stomach ache. I'm used to keeping everything in my head, but that is not possible anymore. The inbox is full.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Like Tamara, I try to keep everything in my head, but the holes keep letting important stuff fall out! I do use folders for my pictures and for my documents. So I guess I am more organized than I thought! Thanks for dropping into my blog!

nashvillecats2 said...

Thanks for sharing your tips, I'm sure we can all benefit from them.

Arlee Bird said...

I'm organized sometimes and a big mess in other ways. Your suggestions here are excellent. I think a lot of insecurity is the result of not being organized. If we don't know what we're doing then we worry about it more.

Arlee Bird
A to Z Challenge Co-host
Tossing It Out

Loni Townsend said...

Ha! I'm a hot mess. I never prepare, but once I'm in the moment, I'm like a commander in the midst of battle. You should see me during critique group. I run it, keep everyone on track, but I procrastinate until the last minute to get everything organized. I'm hoping I pull it off well enough that people don't notice. :)

VR Barkowski said...

Excellent suggestions. I'm relatively organized and using folders helps a lot. Unfortunately, I sometimes forget I've made a folder and end up searching for documents that are already safely tucked away in a well-marked folder on my hard drive. I've also been known to inadvertently make two folders with different names for the same thing. Yes, I'm hopeless.

VR Barkowski

Sherry Ellis said...

I don't think I could ever be this organized! These are really great tips, though!

Carrie-Anne said...

Being so organized is against my nature! I always hated when my mother would go into my room and reorganize my organized chaos to her style. I could never find anything afterwards, and had to immediately make it into my organized mess again. I obviously got the disorganized gene from my maternal grandmother, and it skipped a generation with my mother. I don't know if that's an Aspie thing or a me thing, or if the fact that my grandmother is so much like I am is yet another reason to suspect she might be a fellow Aspie but undiagnosed due to her age.

Annalisa Crawford said...

Great tips. I'm very organised with guest bloggers (I'd hate to let people down, so I always make sure I'm on top of that), but with my own writing, I have a very random approach.

Lidy said...

Great post Chrys. I'm not known for my organization but I'm doing at least half of the tips you've mentioned already. And as for keeping tracks of submissions/queries, I usually refer to my submittable account. But recently I created an excel spreadsheet to help track who I've submitted to before, whether it was rejected/accepted, if there were any editor notes/feedback, and who I want to try submitting to again or move on from and submit to for the first time.

Jennifer said...

I am probably one of the most disorganized people you'll ever come in contact with. That's probably why I'm such a terrible blogger.

Kimberly said...

For the most part, I'm pretty organized and have lots of folders to keep me that way. :) But there are some things where I'm not so organized (until I have to be).

betty said...

These were great tips; I might use some of them in doing my A/Z :) I am pretty organized for the most part :)

betty

Suzanne Furness said...

Sounds like some excellent tips here. I must admit my computer files could do with a spring clean!

Chrys Fey said...

I think I have a little OCD when it comes to things like this.

Chrys Fey said...

Do what works for you, Susan. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Awesome!

Chrys Fey said...

We're organization twins! :D

Happy March!

Chrys Fey said...

A stomach ache? Oh no! I can't rely on my head anymore, because when I tell myself I'll remember something I never do. lol

Chrys Fey said...

Using folders for pictures and documents is a good first step. :)

Chrys Fey said...

You're welcome, Yvonne!

Chrys Fey said...

Exactly! That's why I wanted to share my techniques to stay organized. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I would love to see that. ;) I couldn't function or do a good job if I wanted to the last minute to do things.

Chrys Fey said...

Hehe! You sound like my mom when it comes to keeping organized. :P

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Not everyone like to organize things and that's fine. Some people say they can find things better in their organized mess. Like my sister. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I've been a guest for some bloggers who fail to post my interview/spotlight when it's supposed to go up, or doesn't include everything. It sucks. I know your organized with your guest bloggers, though. :)

Chrys Fey said...

If you're doing half of these tips then you're doing a great job! I use Submittable too, but not all places that I submit to use it.

Chrys Fey said...

Nonsense!

Chrys Fey said...

Sounds like you have things under control, Kimberly. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Awesome! I hope they make things easier for you, Betty! :)

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Suzanne! Every once in a while I do a spring cleaning with my computer.

Unknown said...

Wow, you are really organized. I'm a bit techno-challenged, but have managed to put folders in my email and laptop for "to-do" things. Great tips you have here. Thanks a lot!

Donna McDine said...

From one nerd to another, you go girl! I have almost the same system! Good luck with Tremp's Troops!

DL Hammons said...

I'm pretty organized...but I still learned a few things! :)

Diane Burton said...

I do a lot of your tips. My only problem is not deleting guest posts after they've visited. I don't do the binder thing, but I have a lot of "folders" for my doc files. Lots of good advice, Chrys.

Chrys Fey said...

A little organization like what you do with the folders on your email and laptop can go a long way. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Hehe! It's always nice meeting another nerd. :D

Thanks!

Chrys Fey said...

Awesome! :)

Chrys Fey said...

That's great! Sometime we forget to delete thing. I still had all of my editing rounds with my editor for my published work still saved on my computer! I recently deleted them.

Kristin Smith said...

Hmm, after reading this, I realize I might not be as organized as I thought. I know this sounds sad, but I'm still trying to figure out how to create folders on my new laptop. *sigh*

Great tips! I think I'll try to do better. :)

E. Arroyo said...

Oh my! I wish I was that organized. I do start to be organized but then...yeah. Thanks for the tips. I love the binder idea. I actually do that with my work in progress. =)

Denise Covey said...

Hi Chrys. If your writing is a business you should follow business guidelines which you've given a taste of here. Good one. I do spend a lot of time hunting for files on my computer/s, flash drives blah blah and curse myself every time for not being more organised. :-0

Liz Blocker said...

I'm usually a very organized person, but that all seems to fly out the window when it comes to blogging. I've got the folders and everything, I just forget when I'm supposed to use them!!! Yes, I need to start using some of these tips :)

S.A. Larsenッ said...

Today must be the day for organization. I've read a few posts about it today. :) We all do it on some level though, don't we? Love your tips! Honestly, I do use most of them already, but hearing that someone else does makes me feel like I'm on the right track.

emaginette said...

Excellent advice, Chrys. I've made some notes :-)

Anna from Shout with Emaginette

Shannon Lawrence said...

I'm an organized person and do a lot of the things you mentioned having to do with Blogger. I have email folders for various writing and blog related correspondence, and then I have a "Blog Stuff" folder in which I separate guest posts, personal posts, images, links for Wednesdays (a spreadsheet), etc. And I have a "Writing" folder for all my other writing related stuff. I probably have way too much organization, but it works for me! Great tips on everything, especially the information on running your own blog tour.

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

I like the idea of a binder. I have a number of writing binders, and I work best with hard copies of things. Computer stuff overwhelms me, and I'm not even sure how to create files. I tend to save my docs on the desktop when I'm currently working on them, and later file them in my regular docs or - if I don't need them or printed them already - just delete.

Yanting Gueh said...

I'm not a hot mess but I'm nowhere as organized as you are, Chrys. I do keep folders for my guest posts, and I love my scheduler. It keeps me sane.

Anonymous said...

I have many folders and bookmarks on my computer--not to mention spreadsheets, because I love those. In print, I know where to find things since everything's labeled and in the right place. Being organized takes time, but at the end it saves time.

Patsy said...

I'm not naturally very organised but you're right that we need to be to keep track of our writing and blogging, so I'm working on it.

Angela Wooldridge said...

Gosh, you're organised!
I try to be, I start off with best intentions and then somewhere along the line it all dissolves into a horrible mess.
Then I start again...

sage said...

Are you available for hire? I am pretty organized on my computer--however, I hate dealing with paper files. And I love having an administrative assistant to make appointments, maintain files, and keep me walking in the right direction.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

I'm organized, but not like the above. Excellent list, Chrys. Very impressive. I'm bookmarking.

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi, Chrys.

These are great suggestions, thanks! It is good to keep your work organized. As a designer I also have to have my work grouped properly because there are times I have multiple clients. Then add all my writing work to the foray and things can get "HAIRY"... but, like you, I do keep my work as organized as possible...

Shell Flower said...

These are some awesome ideas and I can tell you are really good at organization. I recently lost a paper document at work and it was really embarrassing. That's what I get for taking a day off and coming back to chaos :)

Stephanie Bird said...

This is outstanding Chrys! You've out done yourself. I'm seriously going to print this out and make use of it. Very useful information. Is there a potential book in this for you??

Yolanda Renée said...

I'm an organized hot mess! Truthfully! Doing the declutter challenge this month has pointed that out even more than usual. Head down, I'm going in!

Great suggestions!

Nicki Elson said...

I'd be lost without my Google calendar and multi-layers of folders!

Kim Van Sickler said...

You are incredibly organized! I'm somewhere in the middle. Organized enough to get myself in trouble but not deep do-do.

Chrys Fey said...

Usually, in the "my documents" folder there's a sidebar with "make a new folder" as an option. But then again, I don't have a laptop. lol

Chrys Fey said...

You're welcome!

Chrys Fey said...

Now is a good time to organize those files and flash drives. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

If you do use these tips, I hope they help. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Really? Huh. It must've been the trend. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

Awesome!

Chrys Fey said...

That's great! It sounds like you're more organized with your blogging stuff than I am. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

Usually, in the "My Documents" folder there's a sidebar with "Make a New Folder" as an option. At least that's what it's like with my computer. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Scheduling things keeps me sane too.

Chrys Fey said...

I have no idea how to do spreadsheets...they scare me. :P That's about the only thing with organization that I don't do.

Chrys Fey said...

Good for you!

Chrys Fey said...

That is the same problem my mom has. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

Haha! If I could travel to you, I'd let you hire me to be your administrative assistant. ;) Heck, I want one of those too!

Chrys Fey said...

I guess I outed myself for being an organization freak, huh? :P

Chrys Fey said...

I can imagine, Michael.

Chrys Fey said...

Oh no! I'm sorry. Hopefully that won't happen again. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Haha! I am considering creating a book with all of my useful posts someday. :D

Chrys Fey said...

Declutter challenge? I like the sound of that! ;)

Chrys Fey said...

I don't use Google calendar, but I'd be lost without my calendar/planner too.

Chrys Fey said...

Haha! Well, that's what counts. ;)

Cherdo said...

Believe it or not, I'm very organized about my stuff. Not only that, I will re-organize just for the heck of it.

One more tip:
Back up your blog!

Thanks, Chrys!!

Chrys Fey said...

I love to organize. When I was little, I had a giant folder where I would store school papers, magazine clippings, and everything I loved. Every weekend, I would reorganize it for fun! lol

I feel silly asking this, but how do you back up a blog?

EEGiorgi said...

Oh, wow, you are the organization Queen, Chrys! :-)
Awesome tips, thank you!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tips! Most of the time I'm organized, but sometimes things get away from me. When I can't stand it anymore, a flurry of reorganization ensues.
By the way, thanks for the how-to post about making a Facebook author page. Very helpful!

Nas said...

Great tips for organizing Chrys. Thanks for sharing!

Cherdo said...

I could write it out, but the lazy supper-cookin' Cherdo will just give you this link:
http://www.bloggeryard.com/2013/08/download-complete-backup-of-blogger-blog.html

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks! I'll definitely check that out! :)

Chrys Fey said...

Haha! Thanks, EE! :D

Chrys Fey said...

I'm glad you found this post and my Facebook author page post helpful, Lori! :)

Chrys Fey said...

You're welcome!

Stephanie Faris said...

These are GREAT! I don't do too many blog tours myself--I seem to have one book out a year...so I need to start preparing for the next one now by setting up a system. As for hosting other people--I have a Word doc where I list every date for the next couple of months and note next to it what blog I'll be posting. I write my blogs a month in advance so guest blogs are usually set up as the stuff is sent to me. I end up doing a lot of rearranging of dates when last-minute things come up, as you can imagine!

Mary Kirkland said...

Those are great tips. I can see where having separate folders to keep photos and posts would really help.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chrys .. I am an organised person - but just never caught up after years of looking after my mother and uncle - just an excuse: Hilary get organised! I know ... I must knuckle under before April creeps up ...

Well done - being organised is an essential in life .. cheers Hilary

Chrys Fey said...

I write my posts about half a year in advance. ;) And I have the whole year scheduled for posts, except for guests which could be booked 2-3 months in advance. Blogging is crazy business. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

It does help. A lot! :)

Chrys Fey said...

Hi Hilary!

Spring cleaning is the perfect time to get organized. :)

Unknown said...

I thought I was an organized person, but after reading this I see lots of room for improvement. I guess post-its are not the best way to stay organized. Haha. Thanks for the tips!

Chrys Fey said...

Post-its. Ha! I haven't used post-its in a long time. I could use some, though. ;)

Unknown said...

Thanks for the tips! I'm pretty organized most of the time. For my blog, I filter all of my emails to help keep track of things, keep a calendar for upcoming posts, and I have lots of folders for images and book blast info. It helps a lot. :)

Chrys Fey said...

You're welcome, Lanise! Organizing things for our blogs does help a lot.