I‘ve been ‘a writer’ for as long as I can remember. As a child, I used to hide pencils and blank paper under my pillow so that I could continue writing and making stories long after my light had been turned out. I used to open the curtains at the end of my room, and write by moonlight. It wasn’t so easy as writing with an actual light – but it was so much better than the alternative: not writing.
I have lots of folders – hard copy files, and on my computer – full of stories, poems, my novel, and various other writing notes. I have half-written scripts, boxes of writing notebooks (journals), and scrawled quotes, advice, tips and techniques, competitions, and other useful or interesting information. I have files of completed works, files of abandoned projects, and files of in-progress drafts. I have WIPs (works in progress) that I have been working on for hours, days, months, and years. I keep all of my ‘projects’. I might assign particular notes to the wastepaper basket/recycle bin, but all projects get saved. If abandoned, they get archived – not deleted. If completed, they move to a new folder under the final project’s name.
A year or so ago, a writer friend mentioned that he keeps a ‘Writing Spreadsheet’ – by which he measures the draft/status of each of his projects (complete, submitted, draft #, etc), and the current word-count for each project. At the time, he was at around one million words overall.
I realised that whilst I also had a document that listed my projects, it wasn’t as useful or detailed as the one he mentioned. So I decided to re-work it. (At the same time, I re-worked my ‘Submissions Spreadsheet’ that I use to measure/record my submitted works … but more about that on Thursday!)
Below, please find a blank template version of my WIP Spreadsheet. As with my previous free downloads, you can download it by clicking on one of the links – a .pdf or Excel Spreadsheet version. Again, you can use it on your computer, or you can print it out for easy instant reference.
(Don’t forget to move between the tabs at the bottom to switch between formats!)