The Daily Journal, Wednesday, July 24

In today’s Journal

* Quotes of the Day
* Topic: Start An Inventory. Start It Now.
* Daily diary
* Of Interest
* The numbers

Quotes of the Day

“The more you reason the less you create.” Raymond Chandler

“The faster I write the better my output. If I’m going slow, I’m in trouble. It means I’m pushing the words instead of being pulled by them.” Raymond Chandler

“[R]eaders don’t really care who published a book, but mostly just care about the story….” Laura Benedict

“I’m not a young man. I’m old, tired and full of no coffee.” ― Raymond Chandler, Playback (grin)

Topic: Start an Inventory. Start It Now.

This is straight from the Department of Stuff I Wish Someone Had Told Me Back In The Day:

Start An Inventory Of Your Intellectual Property. Start It Now.

Then get in the habit of adding to it every time you finish another work.

If you do it right, this can actually replace all the little promo docs I’ve preached about creating and keeping in the folder with the book and cover files.

And you’ll have all the information for all your books in one place. I can’t begin to tell you the number of times this would have come in handy.

Keep your inventory on a spreadsheet or two or five.

List at least the following headings for your columns. Note: Those headings preceded by an asterisk are optional. This is from my spreadsheet for my novels and novellas.

* Subtitle
* Author (if you collaborate)
* Pen Name (if you use one)
Sales Copy
Publisher/Imprint (name of your publishing company and/or or imprint)
Publish Date
Words (word count, ebook)
Ebook Price
BISAC Category 1
BISAC Category 2
* BISAC Category 3
* Box Set (name of box set that includes this novel; for a short story spreadsheet, this heading would be Collection)
ISBN (ebook, D2D)
Universal Link (D2D)
ISBN (ebook, Smashwords)
Smashwords Link
Amazon Link (will contain ASIN)
* ISBN (ebook, other)
* Other Link (StreetLib, etc.)
* ISBN (ebook, other)
* Other Link
* Published By (Other) (if someone else published it)
* Publish Date (Other)
* ISBN (paper)
* Publish Date (paper)
* Price (paper)
* Pages (paper)
* ISBN (audio)
* Publish Date (audio)
* Price (audio book)

In your short stories spreadsheet, you might also want to include Sold To, Sold Date, Publish Date and Rights Revert Date columns unless you go straight to indie publishing with your stories. (I recommend using a separate Submissions spreadsheet if you want to keep track of external submissions, publishers, dates, etc.)

Assuming you write across the literary genres, I recommend keeping separate inventory spreadsheets, one for novels and novellas and one for short stories. If you write essays, poems/poetry collections, etc. I recommend keeping a separate spreadsheet for each of those as well. If you publish short story collections regularly, you might want to keep a separate spreadsheet for that too.

If your work is optioned by Hollywood (or anyone, really) add at least three more columns to the appropriate spreadsheet(s): Optioned By, Option Start Date, and Option Stop Date. If they give you an advance etc., add another column.

The point is, your records can’t be too detailed. And once your spreadsheet is set up, it will take only a few minutes to add all the appropriate info to it as you finish each work.

If you start now, you’ll never look up from a digital pile of hundreds of works and want to down a fifth of whiskey. (grin)

I’m actually writing this topic yesterday (July 23) at 3 p.m. At around 8:30 a.m., I started filling in the blanks on my inventory. Six hours later (no breaks) I was through listing only 51 of my 300+ bits of IP. And that doesn’t touch the poetry or essays.

So take it from a tired old guy: Start an inventory of your IP. Start It Now.

Rolled out at 2:30. Since I wrote most of the above yesterday, I’ll fine tune it, then add the diary and the “Of Interest” today. Then I’m heading back to work on my inventory. Sigh.

Yeah, I know. But I did it to myself. (grin)

Talk with you again tomorrow.

Of Interest

See “Don’t Miss Your Deadlines: A Great Big Cautionary Tale” at

See “Perfection is Just a State of Mind” at

See “Pulp Speed and the Indie Writer” at

See “Raymond Chandler: The Art of Beginning a Crime Story” at This is some good stuff. And yesterday was Chandler’s birthday.

See “Someone Disagrees with PG – Again – The Sequel” at So… I reckon I won’t be using Audible.

See “BookBaby Review: Read This First (Plus Promo Codes!)” at

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 780 (Journal)
Total words for the day: 780

Writing of ()

Day 1…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 7399
Total fiction words for the year………… 358737
Total nonfiction words for the month… 27450
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 211650
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 570387

Calendar Year 2019 Novels to Date…………………… 7
Calendar Year 2019 Novellas to Date……………… 1
Calendar Year 2019 Short Stories to Date… 1
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 44
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 8
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 194
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31

2 thoughts on “The Daily Journal, Wednesday, July 24”

  1. Great advice on putting together some kind of metadata file. Thankfully, I realized this when I was putting together my short story collections. The amount of rework involved taught me that there had to be a better way.

    P.S. Thanks for sharing my post on perfection!

    • You’re welcome. The spreadsheet isn’t just for metadata. I use it for literally everything. When I want to upload books to a new vendor or aggregator, now I can open one file (the spreadsheet) instead of opening one per book (and the promo docs) to get things like the sales blurb, title, price, etc.

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