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It's kind of funny because if you read the comments you will find all of the questions we have answered over the last year or so... It's like this web site inserted into that web site! I hope they all read the comment about our site here and come over and join! New people with new ideas are always welcome!

Great link - thanks Jon,
nay nay

I especially liked...

...the comments of the guy who wanted to create his own diy planner site, and then, on being told of this site, had the temerity to diss this site. ;-) (before going on and describing the lazy way he would put his site together... nice touch) ;-)


no kidding!

I didn't even get that far in the comments! UNBELIEVABLE! Okay, he probably shouldn't join our site then.... lol

At least he apologized for

At least he apologized for the way his comments came across (see the bottom comments here). The way things appear in print often come across as much more confrontational than intended.

I do get irked a little when people want to find ways to charge for a pdf template though, providing a ready made product, fair enough, but when the buyer has to do all the work of printing/binding etc, the person selling is essentially doing what doug/ygor and many others have done here because they found it useful and wanted to share. Maybe I'm being a little too idealistic, but then I can't see anyone wanting to pay for 'advanced templates' when it's so easy to create perfect templates for yourself, or get perfectly good templates from here.

I hear you, but...

I am seeing a surprising number of folks asking for pre-made templates. That says they are either technically incapable of handling my applications or they are too lazy to make the effort of using them. Sorry if that sounds harsh, but I call 'em like I see 'em.

Personally, I would have no problem charging a modest fee to folks that want me to do the work for them. In the case of the templates, they are the combined effort of me and Doug, so I would feel obligated to split the cash with Doug. I would also funnel a good percentage of my portion to either help pay to keep this site up and running or toward a favorite charity (APCA for me - I love cats, and like dogs enough to want to do good by them). The rest would go toward toys for me and my family.

<Fantasize type=nonsexual>
Let's see...
Offer a service where you request daily / weekly / monthly templates in a given date range on a given paper size. I might be able to outsource it thru a Kinko's, or invest in a solid laser printer and several cases of good paper. Then just mailing envelopes and postage. Envelopes are easy, and I can do the postage online thru USPS.

"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

See, I would pay for that if

See, I would pay for that if I could personalize the template a little. (I'm more of a girly font person) I might just be lazy but I have been trying to print my own calender pages and nothing is working. And I don't understand most of what the comments say to solve problems. It would be worth the money to me to save myself the frustration. **edited** as long as it didn't cost more than ordering one from Franklin Covey, which I may end up doing.

Talk to me...

Which template ?
What kind of computer running what version OS ?
What are you doing and what is it doing ?

I'll try to help as best I can.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

ok, I'll try

I'm on a HP with XP.

A weekly template, starting on monday (one of the new files that you attached)

For example: I opened up the weekly template and clicked on print preferences. I changed it to 2 to a page and tried to print a test page. It only printed the bottom half of the templates.

First Problem: Page Setup

The "Page Setup" button only serves to let you choose paper size.
You want Classic, yes ? Then you need to choose Statement size paper (5.5" by 8.5")
Are you printing to Statement/Classic size paper or Letter ? If Letter, then you need to generate a PDF and then either print 2-up or stitch the pages together using a tool like Multivalent.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

well at first I was trying

well at first I was trying to use the pdf files that you provided. Will that not work?

So if I use the dynamic template, just open it up, and save to pdf? I am trying to print to letter in classic size. Then once it's saved print 2 to a page? How do I get it to print on the back?

thank you

I think I have figured out the daily pages. Which at this point is good enough for me! The printing two sides of weekly just boggles my mind. thanks for your help! and i'm hoping that I can use more of the templates once I figure them out.

**edited** well I thought I had it. I saved and printed four pages to test. It worked! So then I went back and saved the whole year... but when I go to open it, it won't work. It is giving me a message that the file needs to be repaired and cannot open.

**again** I'm just going to shut up now. I think the file was too big. I was able to do a month at a time.

Other reasons


This bit jumped out at me:

I am seeing a surprising number of folks asking for pre-made templates. That says they are either technically incapable of handling my applications or they are too lazy to make the effort of using them. Sorry if that sounds harsh, but I call 'em like I see 'em.

Don't forget, there are folks for whom time is a very valuable commodity--to the point that the value of learning how to use the apps/print the pages is less than the value of the time it would take.

I worked with a fellow once who didn't want to learn how to make a shortcut to a document on his desktop (a mac user), he just wanted me to make one for him. It wasn't worth the time and effort needed to learn the simple task--he wanted to spend that time and those brain cells on other things.

These are value judgements, and each person's criteria are different. Most of the folks on this forum value learning a little bit more than time and money--thus we learn to make our own templates, learn to fiddle with new software, mess with printers, research printers that can print on 3x5 cards, research paper quality, look for the best pens... We expend a ton of time and effort on this learning because we value it more than the time and money we could use to buy a premade item from the office supply stores instead. We also value the end result of our learning--smooth paper, crisp prints, perfect size, exact form layouts..

I don't think it's wise to impute laziness or incapability on folks who have different criteria for value. They may be perfectly motivated and extremely capable, but choose not to spend their talents on these particular actions. Can you blame them for not wanting to spend hours and hours getting everything just so for a day planner? What about the rest of the day?



Point taken

I hear what you are saying and see nothing I disagree with.

I guess where I am coming from is my reaction to folks asking for more-more-more after all the effort I put into creating DO IT YOURSELF tools.

I cannot blame them for their priorities or choices except when it impacts on me. My intention was to put up a basic set of pre-generated templates that mirror the contents of the DIY-Kits. If I fell short of that goal, I am more than willing to correct that shortfall. My grouch is the gazillion requests for infinite variations.

Please tell me if that sounds unreasonable. I do tend to over-react on occasion.

At the risk of sounding immodest, I believe I provided a boat-load of goodies for folks. I would like to move on to bigger and better goodies, but cannot if I am filling individual requests.

Have I stated my view clearly and politely ? I hope so. The meds are wearing off.

"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

More more more

Hi ygor.

I hear what you are saying also, and I have dealt with this issue myself a number of times in other facets of my life.

People will always have wants that fall outside what you have done for them already. If you made it pink, someone will want blue. If you made it big, someone wants small, and if you make small, someone wants medium. This is always true--there is infinite variety in people's wants.

What you have to do is decide what you are willing to provide and what you are not willing to provide.

It would be reasonable, for example, to say that you will only provide dynamic templates. Someone else could just as easily make the PDFs that people are asking for. You also can choose the limits of what the dynamic templates will provide. You must set these limits to make yourself happy in what you have chosen to do AND what you have chosen not to do.

When I was making and selling decorative paper boxes, I made the mistake of trying to do too much. Too much variety of decoration, too much variety of shape. Too much flexibility. I couldn't keep up with the photographs for the online catalog, had excess inventory and equipment, and made myself miserable trying to bend over backwards for everyone who might like to pay me a few bucks. I spent too much time trying to make people happy and made myself miserable in the process.

You have to set the price for your services so that you're happy when people buy and you're happy when people don't. The same philosophy is true when you are providing FREE services. Give what you are willing to give and stop when the magic line is reached. That way you are not miserable and grumpy doing 'favors' for people when you don't want to.

Perhaps you are willing to provide more dynamic templates with a particular variation if a poll shows that at least 10 voters want and WILL USE this variation. Maybe you're not willing to do certain variations at all due to the effort involved. You have to make the choices because you're the one with the gift to give. Make yourself happy in the giving and stop when it starts feeling like a burden.

It's OK to say no. You don't even have to explain why you're saying no. If someone really wants something bad enough, they'll either make it themselves, buy it ready-made, or find someone else to provide it. This is not life/death.

My drugs are just kicking in, your post seemed fine to me. :)

Tongue bit through...

Please tell me if that sounds unreasonable. I do tend to over-react on occasion.

I have to confess, ygor, that I'm feeling about the same as you. I've been biting my tongue since the new year, and the thread on Lifehacker just about put me over the top... ;-)

What got my goat? Well, the name of this site is what? "Do It Yourself Planner" Isn't that what "DIY" means? Yet, since the new year, there have buen innumerable requests from anonymous and non-verified people asking for some of the most mundane things! Often, requesting templates at exist, and asking others to find these templates for them! Now, I have no problems with people who are active in the community asking and making requests, but these people are just after a freebie, with no effort. I bet that, nine times out of ten, they never even return to this site--yet in more than one situation, somebody has tried to help them with their requests--and never a thank you in return. So, ygor, I think there is something to your steam-off-letting...


You are correct - thank you

I am a new guy here, and one who has requested help in locating a DIY template for a 2008 2-page week, vertical (replacement or discontinued DayRunner Pro8 Vertical Weekly), and may,unfortunately, although not willingly, fit within the rubric of people asking for mundane things.

First, let me say after reading numerous posts from you and Ygor, (and others) you guys deserve boat loads of praise for your incredible work - this body of work sitting in DIY is tremendous. Certainly the hours you have committed to DIY must be incalculable, as is the value of the advice you provide in the forums.

Second, I too know that doing well by doing good is fine, but sometimes I just wish that the people I help (hundreds of hours in Pro Bono work), would simply say, "thank you," but often forget.

Third, talent is where one finds it, and you guys have it, and I don't (re: DIY stuff). I generally put in 14 hour days in two concurrent professional careers, and try to squeeze time by knowing what I can and can't do. Therefore, instead of paying DayRunner for the calendar I used to use (now discontinued), if you, or other DIY contributors, are able to templatize what I was using, I would rather pay you for your talent, and say thank you - and really mean it.

Thanks again,

You are welcome...

in both ways. Thanks for your kind words and welcome to the community.

I plan to expand all the calendar templates to do different layouts -- like what you want -- but I'm only one guy with a real job and a family to deal with. I amaze myself with how much I have been able to create here.

Do me a favor, please. Post your request (again if necessary) on the comments thread for Two Pages per Week and I will get round to it.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

DayRunner Pro8 Vertical Weekly

No prob. Went looking and found this.
This was one of the variants I was planning. I'm also going to do an 8 column version -- like the two-page-month -- with the extra column being for notes.

Please put the reminder on the two-page-week comment thread so I will remember.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

On the nose, Jon

Requests from non-registered posters get low priority unless they point out a glaring boo-boo
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

Check out Kinkos!

You're on the right track -- this is a great ides -- and I really think Kinkos is what you want (I don't work for them, but have used their services many times).

They take print jobs submitted over the internet or via email, and you can have them print it out at any Kinkos store that there is -- no matter where. And then, if your customer doesn't want to go pick it up at their neighborhood Kinkos, then you could charge an extra fee for the Kinkos people to FedEx it to them.

It's not cheap, but it'd mean they'd do all the production for you -- you'd only have to do the computer work.

I did look at Kinko's and I believe I will try them

for the purpose of reviewing the service.
The cost looks reasonable, but I need to see what one is getting for their money. The online tool is a bit crufty. It will not let me cut the paper other than by special instruction. Cutting, I found out is $1.50 per cut per 100 sheets.

Doing a full year of two-page daily pages would cost about $35 to get a double-sided copy on 70# stock, cut in half.

Uh-oh ! A Classic F/C refill (Original style) is only $28.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

Full circle?

More brilliance from ygor--I never fail to be impressed! Hmm, at this little endpoint here - has this entire website come full circle? In the very first posts, wasn't half of Doug's original rationale for the templates the feeling that F/C refills were overpriced? Perhaps there's more to it, eh? Time versus cost? Of course, customizations are the other factor.

I think they're overpriced too. But, this year I decided to buy an F/C refill - even if they are overpriced, ugly (imho), and have too much space for F/C specific things which I don't want. At the end of last year, I evaluated the time and cost associated with printing, tweaking, cutting, etc. vs. just dropping by staples on the way home (plus the cost) and I had a revelation of "I just need to get on with doing things rather than putting together something that I use to plan to do things".

I even own commercial software (Calendar Creator Plus) which will generate these same sorts of calendars in all the usual sizes. But I decided to go pre-printed none the less. This is is an experiment, I might not go with F/C -- and it turns our ygor released his software about after I made my purchase - aargh. I've been turning this over in my head for quite a while (I made a post > 1 year ago observing, not seriously, that most templates' functions could just as well be done with a blank sheet of paper). The minimize-time/cost vs I-just-like-playing- with-it - still devils me.

Not necessarily

It "works" only if the FC method works for you. If not, Thou Art Skrood. :)

Also, this is the cost of getting someone else to do your printing and cutting for you. I guess it boils down to how you feel about your cash versus your time. Me ? I have some time and I am cheap like Scrooge McDuck.

The page/pages per day never worked good for me. I can make do with pages per week or month just fine. So I would not be spending this much in either effort or cash.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

Template Business Model

The templates that I offer for free here and on my website have led to some paying work. I designed three sets of 10 cards (with more to come, I hope!) for a client. She provided the content, I did the layout and design work for free. (The design was pretty straightforward; on more complex projects I might consider charging for design time.) I handle the printing, punching, and shipping, for which I get paid. So it's more like I am getting paid to be a printer rather than for creating the templates, which is a very amenable deal for me. Win-win all around, and the client links to my site too, so it could even lead to more business in the future.

This model might work for others here too, I just offer it as an example of one person's approach. FYI, my day job is a freelance writer-editor, and I offer templates as marketing freebies.

I guess I just see it as a

I guess I just see it as a business model that could never work because of the work you guys here have done. Then when I think about it more, I realize it could work, but only by preying on those who haven't discovered this site, and I view it as a little unethical to withhold information when you know there is a better and cheaper alternative. But then, I'm also irritated by those 'as seen on tv' ads which sell 'new magic dust' or whatever that has been out for 30 years and is available for half the price they're selling it for from the nearest walmart or home depot.

Now, I understand the view of those for whom time is a precious commodity, which is where Franklin Covey etc. win out, they make the templates, provide them printed and pre-punched, and sell binders to put them in too. I just don't see who would be so busy as to not find the free diyplanner templates, yet have enough time to print out, cut, and punch a years worth of templates.

Customized work, or the Kinko's idea, are different. You're doing work specifically for a client, or providing the complete solution so the customer just has to add the pages to their binder.

What they said.

I have often been dismayed by finding the most amazing templates here, and the variety has grown by leaps and bounds since my first visit. Oh, the dismaying part. "Can you do this?" "Can you do that?" "This doesn't work." etc.

I had a whole big long thing written out but really, it all comes down to:

Though I am technically adept and creative, my templates are now way cooler than the things I concocted on my own.

When I am time-poor and cash-notpoor I pay people to do all sorts of things and am happy to do it. I'm a great cook but cooking 3 times a day is not my priority. Conversely, I'm a terrible housekeeper; I pay my housekeeper well and I worship the ground she walks on.

There's no deception when you provide services people want. Tell everybody about the site; those who come back to you are pre-qualifed, in sales terms.

Customization is a major feature of more developed societies and economies. 1) It's a luxury we can afford. 2) Having what we need often enables us to afford more. 3) We're regaining something we lost with mass-production--difference. 4)We're also regaining the intangibles of "craft". We are in touch with another person's spirit, and with creation, blah blah blah. Etc.

In short, I think it's a sign o' the times that there's a sizable need for custom templates. And I think people who, via craft, fill mundane needs give the world an enormous gift.

Do what you want to do, but know that you've already made hundreds, if not thousands, of lives better already. Custom templates help some of us cope with modern times. Hurray that somebody realized there was a need for such a bizarre thing, and that so many people have donated them.

Fantastic and kind words

Thank you.

Things like this make it worth all the fuss.

! ! Group Hugs ! !
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

ygor's and other people's talents at DIY knock me out

I think ygor (and doug)(and other so generous makers of templates for DIY...

sometimes those of us who toil long and give so much away, may not realize how many people appreciate the work... as so much of what we hear after the giving, is: create more for me, do more, tell me more, help me more, teach me more. In some way, that 'wanting more' of good things is one of the sweetest aspects of human nature. And sometimes it can be a little chafing.

It's just my two cents' worth, but I believe that little aggrivations come along with the territory of being gifted. And I believe all persons are born gifted.

THough I have not used any of the templates here, I love the templates you and others have made here, all the more because the process of 'how to', remains a mystery to me. Yet, I have learned so much about 'organizing my chaos' (lol) at DIY, and I feel tender toward the people here because they are warmfunnysmart. And sensible. And creative.

I am at that place you describe ygor, and most every day... nearly weeping blood to try to meet others' demands for 'more.'

I have to cleave to what another commenter said earlier, paraphrased: Know your boundaries. That is the only cloak that I know that will protect the gift ...whatever our gifts are.

I may be old enough to be everyone's grandmother, or maybe even great-grandmother. My work in the world, I hope, by the time my days run out, will hopefully have used up everything I've got, everything I came to earth for and with.

BUT, the only way I know how to do that halfway decently--and not just turn into a gingerbread house that everyone has picked all the candy off of till its just ragged rafters left on a foundation... lol... is to give lots away, and to make my living with those things that have taken me years to produce, and to draw boundaries so that I have enough self and gift and juice to continue on to the next endeavor/summons.

I hate to speak of such things out loud, for I've a lifetime of struggle to overcome deficits I have but did not choose. It is this: I cannot very easily learn new software without very clear linear step-bystep instructions. THis is just me and my tangle of dyslexia. I must spend inordinate amounts of time to attack the learning curve of any and every new piece of design or software. Let me say it this way: It is not my gift. My gifts, though they might seem poor to others, are different. And deeper than I am. But, different.

It is not lack of will nor an unwillingness to work hard. I work relentlessly hard at my work 17/7 and have a good deal to show for it. So it's not sloth. It's inability; lack of a knack for a certain way of thinking.

So, I just wanted to make sure really, after this long epistle, that you knew, ygor (doug) (and others here), that I work in the underworld of creative life, and any time I look at your work, I see way beyond it, to the hours and hours of weaving and unweaving, planning, adapting and creating, tinkering, and trimming that you have done to make your templates. And I see too, the great hearts that share them so generously with others.

I hope people will always appreciate each other. And I hope no one will look down upon me or upon any of us, for having gifts differing.

this comes with kindest regards,
archangel, who can't spell either. God's joke: let's make a writer who can't spell. lol