I'm still trying to wrap my head around how the agenda can work, and I'd like to get a few other people's approaches to it. What I'd like is to be able to take a task, say writing a paper. I know that will take about 6-8 hours, and I'm not going to write it in one sitting. So, I need to set aside three or four 2 hour blocks to work on it.
According to the manual, Deadlines are for the time something must be done by.
DEADLINE: <2016-03-16 Wed>
Simple enough. Scheduling allows you to set a time to start, so I can schedule the paper two weeks before it's due to start it.
So far so good, but it hasn't actually given me specific times to work on the task. This question suggests scheduling an item, and letting it appear on the agenda until it's done, but that still leaves the problem that a large task can only be scheduled once.
I could assign several timestamps to it, one for every day I want to work on it.
<2016-03-04 <2016-03-06 7pm> <2016-03-08>
This seems to be a popular solution, but the agenda and todo views don't seem to have an easy way to manipulate timestamps, as they do for deadlines and scheduled dates, with
C-c C-d and
The other option is to break up the task into a number of subtasks (e.g., research paper, write body, write conclusion, write intro), and schedule those individually. But, there seem to be many tasks that breaking it up just wouldn't make sense, or where the smallest subtask will still take several hours.
So, have I misunderstood how to schedule things? Is there a simple way to manipulate timestamps in agenda view, or do I just need to plan my projects out to the point every scheduled item can be done in a few hours? What approaches are have worked for you?