I finally took some time out today and wrote myself a little WordPress plugin today (screenshot) that lets me manage the stories I write. The first step of this is to track the story, word count, and if it’s been submitted, accepted, and/or published. It gives me a nice little running synopsis of my progress for the year. You can see this now, on the right side of my blog.
The next step to this is a daily writing log, so I can track how much I’ve written each day. The statistics from that will be nice, such as average words/day, number of days since I’ve written, etc., but the motivational factor makes it worthwhile.
The last step will be an actual submission tracker. When I send a story off, I want to track where I sent it, how long it lived in the slush pile, etc. With enough data, it should provide some useful information about the lifecycle of a manuscript submission. I think this kind of tool would be useful enough to put up somewhere that anyone can use. I know about the black hole but I don’t think that’s an effective way to organize the data.