Most authors dream of the day when they can have an assistant help them with their administrative tasks. I certainly did, but when I got serious about hiring help I realized much of my marketing plans and ideas were in my head…or scribbled in notebooks, and I had no idea how to relay them to anyone else.
I stumbled along using Google Docs for awhile, but when Toby Neal and I launched our first co-authored book, Scorch Road, I realized my system sucked. With two authors and two assistants working on a launch, we needed a way to communicate that wasn’t through long, confusing email chains or marked up Google Docs. We needed project management software.
After doing some research, I decided to try Asana. It looked good, had an iPhone app available, and it was free.
Using Asana, I can create projects like “Sydney Rye #9 Launch”
Within the project I have headings with tasks. I can assign the tasks to myself or my marketing ninja, Jamie. We have conversations right in Asana so no losing track of what was discussed, or searching for information in a long email thread.
Each task can be broken down into subtasks.
When you complete a task, sometimes a mystical creature zooms across the screen.
Which is just plain awesome and fun!
I also use Asana projects when working with other authors writing for my Kindle World. For each novella we go through a process that helps the KW author build their email list, get reviews for their SRKW novella, and have an overall successful launch. I can invite the author to their individual project without giving them access to my entire “work space”. This feature can also be used when working with any outside vendors. For instance, if you hire a company to host a Facebook Party for you or run a blog tour.
Through personal experience, I believe project management software is vital to any successful author business…at least one where you’re not tearing your hair out trying to find “that one freaking email.”
How do you stay organized and collaborate with others? One of the benefits to the Indie community is the willingness for authors to help one another. If you have suggestions or ideas where you’ve found success, I’d love to hear about them. Feel free to reach out via any of my social media links and share your feedback!