This tip is geared mainly for Keyboardists, though parts of it might apply to other instrumentalists or musicologists:
Often there have been times when I start working on a project only to find I cannot finish it or worse can’t even get it started. Hours spent on a project that will never make it to the “Masters” folder.”
The name of the project may be something like “My New Project – No. 14.” It is likely the next time I open the project will be when I am cleaning out my hard drive…
I developed a unique modification to my work-flow in that when I run across these situations, I name the file for whatever day of the week it is… So I wind up with 7 folders each named for a day in the week. Next time I am drawing blanks, I just open up the folder of whatever day it is and revisit whatever it was I was working on at the time. In addition to this, I start each new project from scratch (I don’t use any project or track templates). This works because these files are not created sequentially, as their is a 1 in 7 chance, depending on the day of the week. Chances are, I will have moved on from whatever it was that was originally stuck in my head and the result is I will have a bunch of different projects and configurations.
So what exactly is the benefit? Well for one thing, chances are better I will revisit an idea rather than abandoning an idea. Eventually, the 1 in 7 chances will bring me back.
Also, and this is where this system really pays off, is that I will have a bunch of different project and track templates, since often I may come to a dead end after creating a bunch of different instrument templates w/ dialed in effects. Even if I never finish a project, the hours spent on creating different track templates is not wasted. More often than not, I can climb back into the project with a refreshed approach…