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Charts & Checklists for Serious Dreamers

Related pages: Are You Serious?

Here's my general method for completing large projects:

  1. commit to a completion date with an external party
  2. do essential work
  3. do busywork

Most people attempt to do these steps in reverse order; they never pass the busywork phase.

To avoid real work, people pretend ridiculous rituals are "essential". Album art and book covers and formatting and business plans and logos and flashcards and merch and analytics are not essential. Do real work and measure real progress.

Avoid vanity metrics. Define a number and date that determine the success/failure of your project.

Publish Writings


  1. ☑ find an agent and an editor; set a date for your first draft
  2. ☑ finish an awful first draft
  3. ☑ do what your agent and editor tell you to do

Release Music


  1. ☑ book a recording studio date
  2. ☑ write your music
  3. ☑ record a demo of your dumb music at home
  4. ☑ record your dumb music in the studio
  5. ☑ do everything else

Start a Profitable Business


  1. ☑ commit to a "cut your losses" date
  2. ☑ open a business bank account
  3. ☑ sell stuff
  4. ☑ do everything else

Speak a Foreign Language


  1. ☑ schedule a series of fluency tests at your closest testing center
  2. ☑ do everything else

Organize a Conference


  1. ☑ pick a conference date
  2. ☑ sign a contract with a venue
  3. ☑ find speakers, sell all tickets, and sign sponsors
  4. ☑ do everything else