• 2017 Groundhog Day Resolutions: Kickoff!

    February 2, 2017

    "Groundhog by Pearson Scott Foreman" This is my 11th year (!!!) of doing Groundhog Day Resolutions (GHDR). I took a quick look back at my earliest goals, and found they haven’t actually changed that much. In 2007 I had chosen to focus on three main activities:

    • Deriving Income from Writing and Making Stuff
    • Building Sustainable Social Networks
    • Selling a Real Product

    By 2016, these activities had morphed into the following:

    • Have a “Neat Side Business”
    • Make Progress on my long-term 2024 Goals
    • Share What I Love

    In both sets of goals, making tangible goods to make money while pursuing my own interests is a fundamental goal; I later named this “the pursuit of creative independence”. This year, I’m adding something new I’m calling mindblowing productive synergy in an attempt to de-boringify the hard work. (more…)

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  • Updated Word Counting Calendar and ETP Journal for 2017!

    December 31, 2016

    Word Counting Calendar and ETP Journal New updated digital products and some news!

    Digital Download Updates!

    I squeaked out the 2017 updates to the Word Tracking Calendar and the ETP 365-Day Almanac. These are $12 PDF downloads for the handful of people who like tracking words and printing out their own giant ETP journals on paper!

    • The Word Tracking Calendar uses the same idea from my November Nanowrimo calendar, except it’s expanded for the entire year. It allows you to visually-track how many words you’re writing every day, with pre-calculated word counts for each week so you can see if you’re on track. You get a 12-page PDF for $12, so it’s a buck a month!

    • The ETP 365-Day Almanac is a whopping 365-page PDF in four different formats, for both black & white and color printers. Each page is pre-dated, and every page has an editable task list (requires the free Adobe Acrobat Reader). You can buy either the A4/A5 package or the US/USMini package for $12.

    • Both products are downloadable perks for Patreon supporters!. Patreon is a kind of artist support platform that allows people to pledge a small donation periodically to the creators who are making things they like. I quietly set-up an account last year as an experiment, and right now for $1/month you get access to many of the paid downloads I make, along with some mysterious experimental stuff available to the higher tiers. The plan is when the Patreon level gets to $50/month, I’ll be motivated to start processing the backlog of requests I’ve received over the years. It’s a nice way to connect with people who really like the work I do.

    These two PDF packages were difficult to create, and even now they are complicated to update; I tend to put it off every year to the last moment. It does get a little faster every year, though! I captured both the making of word tracking calendar and the making of ETP Journal as part of my virtual coworking push on YouTube if you are interested in seeing the process that goes into it.

    New Double-Sided ETP Sheets

    Packaging With the help of my awesome printer Papergraphics, I FINALLY have something new for the Amazon store! Last year I retired the 75- and 50-sheet ETP pads because they were piling up in the warehouse. As part of revamping the lineup, we decided to try a different format: double-sided prints, which represent perhaps a better value. And instead of making pads with thin cardboard backers (thick cardboard is ridiculous expensive in small batches), we’re just providing them as loose leaf paper in a binding-friendly format. So if you’re using the Arc or Circa systems, these will be the package you want to make your own journals. I just checked the shipping status (below); hopefully they will be in-stock and listed on Amazon in the first two weeks of January.

    New SKUS on the way! I have 100 units each of the punched and unpunched sheets coming in, in packs of 50 and 150. They’re printed on the same paper as the old single-sided pads, so the quality is very high. I’m not sure how well they will sell, but I think eventually they will all sell-out and I can then calculate the economics of selling these. Eventually I hope to bring back the pads, but right now they are not cost-effective to produce.

    Also coming in early 2017: FULL SIZE ETP NOTEBOOKS, another test run of 100 that uses the same paper as the loose-leaf pads. We finalized the cover stock (a thin vinyl) and I just need to see the samples and work out the pricing. It should be very similar to the half-size notebook. Stay tuned!

    Happy New Year!

    And with that, this is the final post of 2016. Thank you for reading and following along, and see you in 2017!!!

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  • Groundhog Resolutions Review #10 (December 2016)

    December 12, 2016

    ETP Package Sheet Design Happy Groundhog Day Resolutions Review! This is the last review of 2016, because this is when I take a break from yearly goals to deal with holiday madness. This ends the 10th year of practicing Groundhog Day Resolutions, so you’d think I’d be really good at them by now. However, I STILL have not cracked the code to my personal productivity in a list-friendly format. Perhaps the most I can say is that I have persevered for 10 years, and that I might have enough data to start drawing some real conclusions.

    Those conclusions will have to wait until next year; for now, I want to focus on just finishing up the year with this final report. There are some good insights I’ve had, despite the past month not feeling particularly productive. I have mostly, to repeat the word, persevered through the lulls. I have not beaten myself up too much about it, but I have to admit that I have felt depressed about my lack of energy. I have a theory about this, which I’ll get into after describing the month’s doings! (more…)

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  • Groundhog Resolutions Review #9 (November 2016)

    November 10, 2016

    Indianapolis Airport 11/11 is the day I review my Groundhog Day Resolutions to compare my yearly goals against what I actually did. I’ve drifted quite far from my original goals and methodology, but overall I think I’m still making progress toward something. My original methodology for the year was to try to crank out as much stuff as possible every day, but after a few months I burned out. Since then, I’ve been trying to accept a slower pace and be happy with the realities of how long it takes me to do anything of even moderate complexity. But I digress! Let’s get into the happenings of the month! (more…)

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  • Groundhog Resolutions Review #8 (October 2016)

    October 10, 2016

    Happy October 10! It’s time for another Groundhog Day Resolution Review. Last month I was feeling overwhelmed with the number of projects that were not moving, so I decided to focus on two main tasks: billable work and finishing The Living Room Cafe. I’m happy to say that I seem to have stayed unstuck thanks to the coworking chat room and its regulars. (more…)

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