The Author Master Plan is a helpful tool for keeping administrative tasks organized so we can spend more time doing what we love—writing! The Master Plan helps us build, organize, and accomplish tasks related to our writing workflow, new releases, featured backlists, and any administrative tasks that are important to the success of our books and our business. Today we’re going to be talking about how to best use the Master Plan and some tips and tricks for making the most out of this base.
All Content View
The All Content View is the main view in this base and where we will primarily create records and enter necessary field information. The information we store in this base is primarily related to tasks. Say, for example, next month we have a writing deadline, a featured backlist to promote, an audiobook to get started on, and graphics to create for your upcoming release promotion. All of these would be appropriate tasks to put into the Master the tasks by deadlines. In terms of the information we can store about our tasks, we can set a start and end date, we can assign the task to a specific member of our team, and we can set the status of our tasks so we know what’s on our to-do list for any given day.
We can then set our task type, whether it’s writing tasks, monthly overview tasks, new release, featured backlist tasks, administrative tasks, and miscellaneous. Based on the task type and what we enter into that particular field, this base will automatically group our records by that task type. In the All Content View we’ll see that records with the same task type will appear in groups. Finally, we can add information here about the content type—whether it’s related to writing, social media posts, sales promotions, or another category—to further define our tasks.
We can add formula fields which can automatically populate when we enter the start date for our task. These fields are meant for sorting purposes so we have task groupings that appear in order by year and by month. Finally, if your task is related to writing we have a field to enter a release date, just as a reminder.
Writing Schedule, New Release List, Featured Backlist List, Sales Promotion List
Based on the information we would have previously entered into the All Content View, the next four views filter each record by their task type or content type. In addition, these views can be sorted with the soonest task due date first in the list and the furthest out last in the list. This makes these views function as a task list for our writing, new release, featured backlist, and sales promotion-related tasks. These advantage of these views is they make it easier to take a quick look at what needs to be done and get started.
Calendar and Kanban
Again, based on the records that you have entered into the All Content View, these two views can populate based on those records, The Calendar View shows our task records, start and ends dates, and release date if applicable. Using the Calendar View can help us and our team stay on track especially when task lists grow more complicated. The Kanban View is meant to serve as a progress tracker for Master Plan tasks. The Kanban can be grouped by task status and can feature all records tagged so they sort in groupings by status. When we start or finish tasks, we can update the status of that record by clicking and dragging it to another status. Again this is helpful for keeping our to-do list on track.
Master Plan Overview 2021, 2022, 2023
These views are another workflow we can use to keep our most relevant tasks as organized as possible. Each of these views is essentially a copy of our All Content View, filtered by year. This keeps the records filtered in a way that makes it easier to figure out the priority of our tasks. These views are easy to use. Just use the filer box at the top of the base to select the year we want to focus on.Task Lists
Based on the information entered into the Who field in the All Content View, these tasks lists will populate accordingly. They are filtered to only include records tagged with a specific person. This makes it easier on us and our team since we’re only seeing tasks and activities assigned to us. It’s also a helpful way to manage workflow and balance out our team so not one single person is getting stretched too thin.
The Master Plan is a very comprehensive base and allows us to manage our workflow for a wide variety of tasks. It helps keep us accountable by grouping records to make information easier to see, and formatting views in such a way that e can use them to track tasks and update project statuses.
If using Airtable Pro, the Timeline View can create timelines for each task to further the level of accountability and help us better manage workflow. Use the Start and End Date fields, group fields by year and year month, or whatever our preference, then group by task type. This timeline then shows our upcoming tasks, what they are related to in order, so we know exactly how much time we have to accomplish agiven task.
Make sure to check in with us next week for another Airtable Base Overview! If you’re having trouble please reach out to us via our website, also check out our social media, and sign up for our newsletter! Keep on the lookout for weekly blog posts here! In addition, take a look at Airtable’s resources under Airtable Support, there is a ton of articles and forums that can help make the most of your Airtable base template!
Have a good one and get writing!
Frank, Organized Authors
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