Thursday, January 3, 2013

750 Words Per Day Update

Some of you may remember that last fall I posted about a new 750-words-per-day approach to finishing my WIP by early-ish October. So how did that work out for me? Well, it both did and didn't.

It's amazing to me that I'm still figuring out fairly major things about myself at this point in life, but there it is. See, I'm pretty organized, responsible, sensible, and logical, and I at times have made life decisions predicated on these qualities. But I think it's closer to the truth that I'm pretty organized, responsible, sensible, and logical despite the fact that I am mainly a head-in-the-clouds, future-oriented, daydreaming dreamer. (For any Keirsey aficionados, this is because I have J paired with my NF.) Routines fit the J in me better than they fit the main me, the NF. I also find that I prefer to spend my days in a few larger blocks of time rather than change activities many times a day.

Therefore, the 750 per day didn't work that great. Actually, 1500 every two days worked better, and five days or so when I could dive into the book and not do much else worked better yet.

So I'm a binger.

It sounds so -- irresponsible or imprudent or something. Reckless and unbalanced and...free. Haha! But I am now devising ways to be a binge writer while still keeping up with student lessons, which puts me right back in the responsible camp. :)

When my kids were home, I was more of a day-by-day writer. And it worked then. The bingeing seems to be what works now, and I really don't think it's important to analyze it any further. I'm just going to go with it.

The overall change or resolve or whatever it was worked, in that I met my goal and have figured out how to become a faster, if not fast, drafter. So I consider the whole operation a success. :)

24 comments:

Kim Van Sickler said...

I am a firm believer of doing what works for you. Binge away! Hope you have a very productive 2013.

Medeia Sharif said...

Kudos to you. I've become a faster drafter over the years. I kept goals in mind and avoided distractions.

Faith E. Hough said...

Ah, the joys of being an INFJ and constantly contradicting your own personality... :) I'm there with you.
And maybe it's because of that, but I also have to constantly re-asses what works for me and what I need to do. Last year it was a daily goal (1000 words a day), but now that I'm revising one work and plotting a new one, I'm working by weekly and monthly goals instead.
I can't wait to see what all your binges produce!

Barbara Watson said...

I'm not a daily word count writer either. Some days it just doesn't work out with real life. Doing what works for each of us is what's important.

Vijaya said...

I am full of contradictions as well. I also think that in different phases of your life, different methods are called for. So it's wise to experiment.

The weekly check works best for me.

Here's to a wonderful and productive 2013.

Mirka Breen said...

Figuring how you work is and not the CW on how to work is huge. It took me a few years to shed that "write (original fiction) EVERY DAY." Or to discover that the November idea/word-counts November Marathons were not good for me.
Marcia, you have done a great thing with this post. Thank yourself from yourself, and from me.

Jaye Robin Brown said...

Good job! Each to our own process, for sure.

Marcia said...

Kim -- Thanks! And to you as well!

Medeia -- I love to look at your goals and your progress when you post. And that little phrase "I avoid distractions" makes such a difference.

Faith -- Yes to the constant reassessment! I try to make sure that's not just another form of distraction or procrastination.

Barbara -- Yes, and doing what works at that point in life. Even if one does count words, doing so by the week often works better. It's too easy to beat yourself up if a DAY goes haywire, but we can often make the WEEK balance out okay.

Vijaya -- Different phases; different methods, absolutely. When my kids were really young, I wrote from 9pm to midnight. I'm glad that was then. :)

Mirka -- Thanks on both our behalfs (behalves?)! Oh, man, if I ever manage to write 50,000 words in one month (not that I'm going to try) I will REALLY be shocked.

Jaye -- I'll second that!

Rena and Denny said...

I think it's important to set a goal just to see if it works for you. Sounds like you're doing great, all the same.

Andrea Mack said...

It's so valuable to find out the best way you work as a writer. And it does seem different for each book. I think I'm still learning...

Dawn Malone said...

Binging seems to work for me, too, no matter how many times I try to stick to a more straightforward schedule. I count those as lucky who have figured out what makes them tick rather than beating oneself up trying to fit a round peg into a square hole.
Best wishes for a very productive year!

Kelly Hashway said...

When my daughter started kindergarten this year and I was able to write for five and a half hours a day, I learned I can write for five and a half hours straight. The more time I have, the more I want to write. It's a great feeling.

Congrats to you, Marcia!

Marcia said...

Rena -- Yes. Sometimes the goal isn't just the thing that should happen at the end. Sometimes the goal is to see if you can work that way.

Andrea -- Yes, it can vary from book to book as well as from person to person. I guess it means we always stay open to new approaches.

Dawn -- I think I like to binge because it gets frustrating to have to switch to something else just when I've got a head of steam up! I also just plain love IMMERSION.

Kelly -- When my kids were all in school full time and I could become a daytime writer, it felt SO good. Enjoy!

Ruth Schiffmann said...

Congratulations, Marcia, on both learning more about yourself and on meeting your goal!

cleemckenzie said...

Here's to bingeing. I think I'm kind of one who does that, too. Then I collapse. Don't collapse, okay?

I loved your comment on Her Grammarness at The Write Game. I've noted your request.

Marcia said...

Ruth -- Now I'm hoping I can meet my goal of being ready for beta readers by March 1. There's a lot to do!

Lee -- If collapse means "do nothing for two days after," can't promise I won't. :) I LOVE Her Grammarness.

Janet said...

I've never been one of those who set daily word goals. I just write. Some days I don't write anything and other days I can't stop writing. Sounds like you did good, doing it your way.

Marcia said...

Janet -- Yes, I even "just wrote" when I had deadlines. If I knew how much time I had to write the whole book, it just worked out.

Daisy Carter said...

I can totally relate to not wanting to change activities many times a day - never really thought about it, but when I read it it clicked with me that I am that way! I like only having one "to-do" each day. Granted, that to do might be something like, "run errands, all," or "clean entire house," but I want it to feel like one thing.

Very interesting. I might do a little navel-gazing, see if if this also applies to how I write. THanks!

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