Those numbers, words count

I see people talk about their word count often. Some people aim for 500 words a day. Others aim for 1,000 words a day. Those highly skilled, ambitious, disciplined, or under contract will aim for 2,000+ words per day.

Others, like myself, aim just to write everyday. I can’t commit to a word count. I do however try to record what my word count is each day to ensure that I am producing.

When writing, my goal is to complete a rough draft in 3 months. Three months is what Stephen King said was sufficient in On Writing for completing a draft. That is what has worked for me in the past and so that’s what I’m aiming to do – to complete this project in 3 months.


Photo from Instagram: pollyandbooks

I’m working on a murder mystery. I’ve always been inspired by stories of a detective, working to the bone to solve what seems like an unsolvable crime. In keeping up with my tradition, this one does have some supernatural element to it.

My biggest struggle has been – pantsing or outlining? Do I write this by the seat of my pants (pantsing) or do I outline? I’ve searched for help high and low. Some people didn’t help me. Some people ignored me. Some people kicked me when I was down with a 6-week old baby, sleepless, and delirious and said ‘No, I won’t help you.’ BUT, some people did help me, tremendously! Now, I’m a quasi pantser-quasi outliner.

I have a very rough mock-up of an outline that I am using as a guide. It’s a road map, but if I decide to take the scenic route as opposed to the fastest route, well I have that option.

I’m 31,000 words into this beauty and aiming to have the full draft completed by the end of August. I will spend all of September and October on edits and then, yes folks, right before the holidays when everyone is itching to go on their winter breaks I will start pitching it to literary agents.

I’m nervous. Excited. Sick to my stomach. Did I say nervous?

Wish me continued writing luck.