It is nice to be back to writing a blog post again, feels like it has been an age. I haven’t had a chance to be on this for awhile and looking forward to reading through everything I have missed from all your beautiful posts.
I am currently in the process of writing two novels, alternating the story every other day so that both, where possible, get time to shine.
Whilst mindlessly sitting at my desk at work, then later as I was driving from one town to the other and then relaxing in the chair, the same question hit me. Do word counts matter to all writers? Do daily word counts matter and do you have a target you wish to achieve for a novel?
It can be hard to juggle writing when working a full time job but every second and every word counts. Here are my thoughts and targets on a daily and overall basis.
To me, I enjoy setting myself a target. When I started out last year writing a novel, I set the target at 500 words a day. It was a start. But then I was blasting it each day, even on my ‘down’ days I was achieving over 1000 words (I seem to be more productive between the hours of 3am – 8am on my days off, than I do in a whole day I plan to write between work and daily chores).
So the target has now changed to 1000 words a day, even on my down days. If I don’t achieve it I’m not too fussed but just the other day I managed to write over a thousand for one novel and close to two thousand on the second novel without much hassle (days like these are very rare, I barely scrape just past the thousand mark on a good day.
I know that different genres genuinely have different page lengths and word counts. The two novels I’m working on are on different spectrums. The first novel I am hoping to achieve at least 75,000 whilst the other I’m hoping for plus 100,000. Ambitious but the tale has enough depth for me to achieve this (I’ll let you know how that one works out).
I love the challenge of a daily word count. I don’t think it is restricting or too demanding and the idea of having a word count in mind for the overall story helps too with the direction and editing stage. This may not be ideal for everyone but it has worked so far for me.
I am interested in learning and improving, trying and testing new and wonderful techniques, so here I ask what works best for you? Do you have a word count in mind per day or overall? Do you have set targets, be it chapter length, time scales or book length? I would love to find out more so please get in touch and join me for some cake.