Hey there! It’s me, Heidi.
Here’s the deal, y’all… I am a planner. I am a planner to the core, and I love it. Does it sometimes stress me out? Absolutely. Do I sometimes get carried away (and by carried away I mean do I give my OCD laden self anxiety heartburn if things don’t go exactly as I planned) and forget that God’s got this? You betcha. However, I wouldn’t change my love of planning for anything in the world. It’s part of who I am, and for the most part it serves me well.
One of my most favorite things to do around May every year is to start researching planners and picking out the perfect one for the upcoming year. Go ahead and roll your eyes, but yes I even plan which kind of planner I will be using. It’s very exciting to me! I usually try to find a spiral bound planner that has a hard cover and/or a vinyl protector sheet over the cover, that has a horizontal layout, that follows the school year calendar because it coincides with the theatre season, that has lines on the page, and that shows one whole week on a page spread. I also pick out a design that is inspiring to me, and I even buy stickers and colored pens to help keep the planning process throughout the year even more fun!
I know, I KNOW. I’m a super nerd about planners, but I can’t help it! It’s in my blood.
Well. Let me just tell you. I recently came across a planner on Instagram that had my heart a-thumpin’! It’s called “Booked It,” and it’s a planner specifically designed for people working (or trying to work) in the performing arts industry. How genius is that?! I wish every occupation had a specific planner designed perfectly to meet the needs of that industry!
Even though my career isn’t as a performer (although it probably should be… move over Sutton Foster!), I knew that with my passion for the arts and my passion for planning and organizing I just HAD to get my hands on this planner to see what it’s all about. So I bought one! Oh. My. Gosh. I think I’m in love.
Look at that cover! It’s gorgeous! So sleek with the black and gold colors. There’s that spiral binding that I adore. It makes it so easy to spread it open flat on a table or to fold back the cover all the way so that you’re only looking at one page at a time. And the tagline for Booked It is just perfect… Be the director of your own story. Incredibly fitting for people who are trying to take control of their destiny and create their future in entertainment. Another great detail is that it’s pretty compact. The planners I usually buy are pretty big, but I could definitely fit this one easily into a tote or purse.
When you open the front cover, not only is there a title page where you can add your name and phone number in the event that you misplace your planner, there’s a POCKET WITH STICKERS. L-O-V-E. Stickers are one of my favorite ways to organize my planner, so this is a really great touch for me. There’s of course the everyday use stickers like birthdays, date nights, coffee, meal planning, bills, vacations, hair appointments, working out, and laundry. But, there’s also stickers that specifically pertain to a performer’s world such as rehearsals, classes, travel dates, home dates, shows, and call backs.
This two page spread, I really like. I think so often we (myself included) plan, plan, plan, work, work, work, and lose sight of what brings us joy and the amazing goals we have for ourselves. These two pages allow for writing down the things that make us happy so that we make sure to schedule time to incorporate those things into our weekly activities, and to put our goals and our plan to accomplish said goals on paper. I don’t know about you, but I feel like I have so many things that I want to accomplish and because I don’t see it in writing, I forget about those things and go about my life in a somewhat robotic state never stopping to smell the proverbial roses and make time for myself to ENJOY LIFE.
This yearly mini calendar feature is quite nice, too. 2016, 2017, and 2018 each have a two page spread. It’s great for a quick look back or ahead if you need to know what day of the week a particular event was/is on. I also like to use the mini calendar for circling important recurring dates like birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, etc. For the performer, you may use it to mark the dates for a run in a particular show, dates that you may be on tour or at home, and even your Broadway debut!
This right here is the meat of the planner. This is what most of the pages inside look like. While I usually like to see one whole week on a two page spread, I actually don’t mind that each day has a whole page in this particular planner. If you look at the top half of the page you’ll notice a few things: you can enter in the date and day of the week yourself so you don’t waste space if you don’t have anything to schedule on a particular day, there’s an inspirational quote from famous performing artists, there’s a place to write down your goal and three actions you’ll take to achieve the goal, and there’s a to-do list for the day. My favorite feature on the top of the page is the inspirational quote. I am a quote junkie. I have a notebook that I write down quotes in so that when I need some motivation I have an instant pick-me-up to go to, but I’ve never had a planner that had a quote for every day that I could use as a sort of theme or mantra. Especially for you performers out there, your work is so difficult and so time-consuming and so draining for sometimes seemingly little reward. How wonderful to have a daily reminder that what you’re doing in important and that all the greats before you have experienced your same high and low points?
Towards the bottom of the page is where the scheduling in the traditional sense of the term comes into play. There’s a slot where you can write down whatever meeting or audition you have booked, the location, and any notes you may have about it all in one spot. It allows for separating those meetings and auditions into morning, afternoon, and evening time slots which is super convenient. Obviously, it’s great that this planner has room for you to write down what you have booked (hence the “Booked It” title of the planner), but I like that it allows you to write down the location and notes as well to reduce some of the anxiety that comes along with those meetings and auditions.
Ok now this audition log in the very back of the planner is suuuuuuuuuch a good idea! SUCH a good idea. It allows performers to keep track of all of their auditions and the results of those auditions in one place. You can write down not only who the audition is with, but also the project name (title of the show, movie, concert, etc.), the project type (is it a tv series, youtube series, live concert, big screen movie, improv show, etc.), your audition date (I would also recommend adding the time), what you wore (super important so you don’t wear the same outfit in front of the same casting personnel twice and/or if you’re auditioning for a specific character and you need to look a certain way), and the results of the audition (did you book it or no?). There’s also a little room in that last column for other general notes that you may have. I can’t tell you enough how happy the audition log makes my organized self! I could just see myself using highlighters to mark positive results in one color and “bummer” results in another. It would be so neat to look back at the end of the year and reflect on whether I had more “yes” or more “no” responses to help inform my goals for the following year.
Finally, there’s a notes page at the very back of the planner. This was the only thing I was a little disappointed in with this planner. I like to have lots of space to write down notes, phone numbers, and just random things I have to remember. I would like to at least have seen 5-8 notes pages in the back, although 10-15 would be ideal. Oh! And there’s also a pocket on the inside of the back cover just like the one on the inside of the front cover. I would probably use that back pocket to store business cards and such. You can’t fit a whole lot in it, but it’s nice to have somewhere to put loose paper until you can get home and give it a permanent place of resting.
All in all, I think this is a GREAT planner! Honestly, I like it so much – especially all the quotes and space to plan for your goals – that I may start using it even though I’m not a performer. It’s a really great product for all you actors, singers, comedians, musicians, and artistic folk out there, and it’s not expensive. It’s only $30, and it’s so worth it to keep yourself organized and on task for an entire year. It has been endorsed by people like Megan Hilty (Wicked, 9 to 5, Smash), Jackie Burns (Wicked, Hair, If/Then), and Tommy Martinez (Newsies, Kinky Boots, Hairspray NBC) who have said that it has helped them not only with auditions, but for general organization, goal setting, and making sure to take some times for yourself. From their mouth to your ears… this planner is AWESOMESAUCE!
GO GET ONE and leave a comment below letting me know how the Booked It planner has helped you.
Until next time,