Because I enjoy writing in a lot of different areas, I found that sometimes I missed the dates on writing contests I wanted to enter as the paperwork was lying in my stack of to-do stuff on my desk. And sometimes I missed deadlines on magazines that used themed lists for each quarter.
I tried putting things into folders and stacking them on my desk, but that still meant I had to remember to pull out the contest folder or specific magazine folder and see what was needed that month. Plus remember assignment deadlines for a variety of magazines and devotional publications that asked me to write or I had queried.
Finally I started using a calendar. Not a desk calendar or organizer. Just a plain calender. I tear out each page (or you can print a blank one online) and start writing down contest deadlines for that month, theme list deadlines, assignment deadlines, and my own deadlines (when I want to get a chapter done, etc.) Also I add in school visits, book signings, writer meetings. And I might include notes to myself to do a Friday Writer's Tip on my blog or submit a proposal or send out emails to bookstores and schools about visits.
Beginning September 1st, try preparing a calendar for your writing. I hang it up right behind my computer so I can see it easily. I haven't forgotten a deadline in a long while.
Keeping an Expert File