Saturday, October 23, 2010

168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam

Laura Vanderkam. a New York City-based journalist, is the author of Grindhopping: Build a Rewarding Career without Paying Your Dues (McGraw-Hill, 2007), which the New York Post selected as one of four notable career books of 2007. She is a member of USA Today’s Board of Contributors, and her work has also appeared in the Wall Street Journal, City Journal, Scientific American, Reader’s Digest, Reason, and other publications. A 2001 graduate of Princeton, she enjoys writing fiction, running, and singing soprano with the Young New Yorkers’ Chorus. She lives with her husband and two young boys.

Laura’s newest book, 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think, was released in May of 2010. Her book received promotion from Redbook (June 2010), and Parenting Magazine (July 2010). In addition, Laura has appeared on The Today Show and Fox News.

We are thrilled to welcome Laura to Writers in Business!

First, can you tell us why we should think of our time as 168 hours?

It's what you get when you multiply 24 by 7 -- there are 168 hours in a week!Thinking in terms of 168 hours gives us a more complete picture of our time. In any given day, we might not achieve the right balance. We might have to work late, or we might be late to work because the kids miss the bus. When we get caught up in looking at 24-hour blocks, we don't see spaces in our schedules. But looking at the whole 168 hours opens up a lot more possibilities. So you can't exercise every day. But if you can get up early twice during the workweek to run for 30 minutes, and then run twice on weekends, you can make real progress.
Why do you say people have more time than we think?

Some of this is just math. There are 168 hours in a week. If you work 40 and sleep 8 hours a night (56 per week) this leaves 72 hours for other things. If you work 50, this leaves 62. This is still a lot of time! In 62 hours, you can probably find 4 to exercise, 3 to volunteer, and still have time for your family and your hobbies.

That’s a good point! I’ve never looked at time that way before. Any tips to help readers get started?

Try keeping a time log. If you've ever tried to lose weight, you know that nutritionists tell you to write down what you're eating, to keep you accountable. It's the same with time. Write down what you're doing as often as you remember (you can download a spreadsheet at Time Management Spreadsheet). Think of yourself like a lawyer billing your time to different projects. At the end of the week, add it up and see if it reflects you're priorities. If not, ask what you'd like to be doing with your 168 hours, and see what you can change.

In this demanding 24/7 world, we can all use some extra time. Laura offers a treasure trove of useful information on her blog: My 168 Hours and you can order her book on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders and many other bookstores.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Pat Hauldren Editor and Writer Extraordinaire

Pat Hauldren, known to her friends as Alley, joins us today from Grand Prairie, Texas. She is a talented freelance writer, editor and writing teacher who wears many hats.

Through her web site , Alley offers a variety of services including full line-by-line editing, proofreading, transcription, newsletter writing and design, ghostwriting and customized social media planning. She can also design web sites and create content for them.

She is currently copyeditor at Cyberwizard Publications, editor for the newsletter of a local chapter of RWA, and freelance writer for the

- What is your favorite genre?

My favorite genre is science fiction and fantasy, or as we are calling it now, speculative fiction. My first SF was unintentional. In grade school, we lived in a small town in the piney woods of East Texas. Small town meant small library, which meant, small selection of books. At the time, I was reading horse stories (you know, Flicka and all that.), but one Friday afternoon, before catching the bus for the hour ride home, I grabbed several books I assumed to be the ones I wanted. Well, I did want them, after the fact. I had selected several Heinlein’s young adult books like Have Space Suit, Will Travel & Starship Troopers. Speculative fiction has been an addiction ever since.

- Can you tell us about your new position as writer for the Sy Fy Channel at the Examiner?

I write Speculative Fiction and call myself a Mythologist because when I world-build, I have to create the legends and myths of my world. Even when writing contemporary fantasy, I delve into human history, legends, myths, and fables to weed out those intriguing nuggets that suggest gem of possibilities for a fantastical world or culture.

Please visit me at the Sy Fy Channel Examiner -- SyFy Channel read more about my world.

As if all this wasn’t keeping her busy, Alley writes for other channels at the Examiner including:

Fort Worth Writing Examiner
Fort Worth Hockey Examiner
Dallas Speculative Fiction Examiner
Dallas Women's Sports Examiner

Where can writers go online to learn more about writing and editing?

I have created, organized, and moderate several online and live writers’ workshops. Some of the online workshops are:
• DFW_Authors ~ for writers in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area of Texas
• NTRWA ~ for members of the North Texas Speculative Fiction Workshop
• SFF_Writers ~ for Science Fiction & Fantasy writers world-wide
• SFF_Texas ~ for Science Fiction & Fantasy writers in the Texas area
• Texas-Writers ~ information and networking for Texas area writers, editors, agents, publishers
• Texas Writers Classifieds ~ writers resources including freelance writing & editing jobs, publishing & marketing news, special events, booksignings, workshops, writing contests, and seminars.
• Writing & Publishing ~ for writers, editors, agents, & publishers all around the world.

Alley, you are one busy woman! I’ve enjoyed learning more about you and your writing. Having just subscribed to your SyFy channel, I’m looking forward to reading your creative writing as well.

Readers can contact Alley at , Google Voice: 214.444.8916, Skype: Pat Hauldren and online at