Musings on writing, lessons learned by an aspiring professional, book reviews, movie reviews, an occasional t.v. show review, and unashamed opinion.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Word Count

So I rearranged my work schedule a while back so that I'd have Fridays off.  The plan was to focus all of Friday on writing.  Before I did this, I was writing almost every morning before I went to work, getting up at 5:30-6:00 and writing until 8:30.  I found that writing every morning, with a word count goal of 1,000 words, I was getting a lot done.  I felt I was fairly productive, working a full-time job and all.  Flash forward to now, when I have an entire day to devote to writing, and you get what I've turned into: lazy.

I'm lucky if I reach a thousand words each Friday.  This is bad.  REALLY bad.  Since the beginning of August, I've probably only written 6,000 new words in Gunlord (including the 2,000 or so that went into my lost chapter) and another 2,000 on a different project.  I used to be able to claim 8,000 or more words every two weeks.  I'm quite upset with myself over the whole thing.  Problem is, I really like having Fridays off work, so I can't go back to my old schedule.  And I'm really not a morning person, although I forced myself to be one for a year or so.  So what the crap am I going to do?

I originally planned Gunlord as a trilogy.  In my head.  There was none of that outlining garbage going on.  So I was shooting for 100,000 words per book.  Pretty easy goal.  Plus, I liked the idea of an epic fantasy with each book only being around 300-350 pages, instead of the normal 700 pages.  100,000 words meant a couple of months of steady work--about 4.5 since I've never written every single day.  I was on my way to hit that goal as of the end of July, having 70,000 words already in the bag.  And then I hit a wall in the story.  And then I shifted my work schedule.  And then I didn't get much writing done.  And then Gears of War 3 came out.

I've been on a steady, downward trend for too damn long.  (But it is so bloody fun to blow people apart in video games).

I've made some promising steps this past week.  I actually wrote a few days before work, despite hating my brain for waking me up early.  And I've been at the library today for more hours than any other week, plugging away at chapter eighteen.  (My brain needs a rest so I thought I had time for a bit of bloggorama).  And the best part is that I've unstuck myself in the story.  Gunlord's beginning was just getting finished at 70,000, which is way too late in a 100,000 word novel.  But there wasn't much that could be cut out to shorten it up.  Well, I've changed focus from a trilogy to a standalone now.  So instead of a series, there's gonna be one, badass, gunsling'n-epic and it'll be done.  I'm leaving the door open on final word count, but it will for sure fall between 160,000-190,000 words.  (The joys of gardening).  I'd really like to have it finished by the time my baby girl is here in December.  No way in hell that's going to happen.

C'est la vie.

That's all.


  1. One thing that I've played with, but began using a lot more the last few weeks, is Write or Die. I'm telling you, for rough drafts it's unbeatable. You put in how many words you want to write and how long you want to write and it 'encourages' you along.

    Best of all, Write or Die Online is free to use and you can post your results on your blog.

    It usually takes me about 40-45 minutes to pump out a thousand words. When I'm done, I copy and paste it into my master document. Then I have to go back and clean up the chunk of text that I just crammed out. But I'm a thousand words richer.

    Give it a try. You might like it. And let me know when you're ready for Word War.

  2. I know what you can do....Don't be lazy! haha just kidding. I know it's hard to get motivated sometimes. It's hard to have two full time jobs pretty much I know you'll figure it out. You always do:)