Episode 75 – Tee Off The Front Nine With Productivityist Mike Vardy!

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Episode 75: The Newbie Writer’s Podcast

 Special Guest: Mike Vardy

Author of “The Front Nine: How to Start the Year You Want Anytime You Want”
@mikevardy | http://mikevardy.com | http://www.productivityist.com

The Front Nine





Mike Vardy may spend a lot of time writing and talking, but it’s what he writes and talks about that can turn inaction into action. His work has been featured by many productivity-focused websites and publications, including Lifehack.org, Lifehacker, The Next Web, The Globe and Mail, and SUCCESS Magazine.

Mike, you describe yourself as a productivity enthusiast or, rather, a “productivityist”. Tell us what that means, and how you came to this position and vocation.

In your blog and web site you tell reads to stop doing productive and instead start being productive.

Explain the difference.

What do you see that is more doing rather than being in the realm of the productive.

And why are we so focused on being productive? Is there another way to live or is this the fate of over zealous American’s?

Can you give the newbie writer some tips on how to be productive, or how to be more efficient as they launch their initial projects?

Can you give us some tips?

For back up, one of Mike’s blog posts:

Projects First, Task Second

POSTED ON 03/06/2013

I used to focus on individual tasks over the projects — if any — that they were assigned to in my task management system. What happened was I got things done, but things were spread out amongst multiple projects so it took me longer to complete any one project. When you start using a task manager — or even a simple to-do list app — this is generally how you’ll work as well.

But you should really look at projects first…and tasks second.

When you think about it, you should build things from the overarching to the smaller details. Things like your vision and mission statements should inform what you do — they are perhaps the largest elements that inform how you live and work. The same goes for projects. They may not be the largest of elements, but they certainly are larger than tasks.

I suggest you try to give everything a project that it can be attached to so that you can look at projects first and tasks second.1 Then work from the project down, making sure that you make significant progress towards completion of the project rather than focusing on the tasks within the project. Doing that will strengthen the purpose of why you’re doing what you’re doing, and you won’t get caught up in doing just for the sake of doing.

If you need a trigger to keep this in mind: Remember that a project can project you further than a task simply on its own can.




The Front Nine: How to Start the Year You Want Anytime You Want (Diversion Books) is a guide to help you get ready, get set and go with your new year anytime you want. By using the elements of the game of golf and applying them to productivity and goal-setting, The Front Nine aims to put you in a position to make a fresh start on a project, a goal, or even a deeper desire whenever you’re ready.

You don’t need to be a productivityist to wrap your head around it — and you certainly don’t need to be a golfer. You don’t need to be using a task manager – or a task management system – to make it work for you (although it can help). All you need is the willingness to want to change and see things through to make The Front Nine work for you.

The Front Nine is $4.99 (USD).To buy it from the iBooks Store, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Ganxy, click here.

Word of the week

Word of the week is brought to you by: Author Entrepreneurship Magazine

Are you shy? Introverted? Clearly you are a writer or someone who should be. This magazine is for you. Created by Beth Barany (she’s been on this show!) it aims to help you create a sustainable, successful, and enjoyable career and better still, this magazine is FREE. February issue out now. Go to www.authorentrepreneurship.com and sign up today.




1. A tired or meaningless remark.
2. A tiresome or boring person.


From bromine, from Greek bromos (stench). Earliest documented use: 1836.

In earlier times, potassium bromide used to be taken as a sedative. So any statement that was intended to be soothing (“Don’t worry, everything will be OK.”) acquired the name bromide. Eventually any commonplace or tired remark and anyone uttering such remarks came to be known as a bromide.
The term was popularized in the title of Gelett Burgess’s 1906 book “Are You a Bromide?” It was to promote this book that Burgess coined the term “blurb”.


“His daddy occasionally pops back in to dispense nonsensical bits of advice — ‘If you’re not first, you’re last’ — a bromide that the young Ricky Bobby adopts as his motto.”
Teresa Wiltz; Where There’s Will; Washington Post; Aug 4, 2006


Tortured Sentences:

Submitted by Elena a LOYAL spammer, I mean listener… yeah…

Hi I believe in my luck and I am never tired to explore the
world and to look for happy moments. But I dream of someone to share my luck
with! I love life in its bright colours. I am an extremely active person
who leads a healthy way of life. My hobby is drawing and sport(running). I
am seeking a caring, understanding and honest man. And that is why I have
just one question, maybe it’s you ? Write to me ****
@yandex.ru if you
want to continue exploring with me!


It’s starting to look like spring in California. And since spring is so early, we must water our yards and gardens. As I was wrestling with a kinked hose (or kinky hose, which is really, another prompt entirely) I thought of the kinks and bends in our plots. What’s stopping the flow of your story? Can you write about that kink? How do you feel about it?

Or just write something Kinky.

Shout outs:

Camra from BookDivas.com here – was wondering if you could help us spread the word about something to your readers. We recently launched our Ask a New Author column with a new set of newbie authors. For the next several months we will have Jean Ryan, Olivia Chadha, and Mindy Mejia, all from Ashland Creek Press, answer questions about writing and publishing.

The purpose of the column is to give aspiring writings an inside look at how authors who have recently jumped the publishing hurdle did it – from writing advice to getting their publishing deal. Their advice is honest, fresh & from the heart!

I was hoping that you would be willing to share with your readers that they can submit their questions to askanewauthor@bookdivas.com, we pick 3 each month to feature, and then select 1 of those to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card.

Tale Teller Podcast http://taletellerpodcast.blogspot.com.au!




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