I nailed writing this amount today. I’m no Stephen King, who writes 2000+ per day. But, considering my life teaching, mothering, “wifing” and generally living, I wrote above and behind.
For 1180 words, I need about two and half hours spinning them into fruition. Normally, 500 makes my daily word count, which takes about an hour to achieve. (Thank you, coffee!) With 500 words as the least amount, I feel good for meeting my daily goal without stress and, should I reach more, I do a jig or two for overcoming my brain’s capacity for cessation after the 500th word.
Hence, I schedule writing five days a week while granting weekends as free periods. In other words, if I want to write, I do. If I do not…
What’s a Reasonable Daily Word Count?
In my opinion, if you write 500 words a day, you win. Yet, some writers and bloggers average 1000 words. As mentioned before, Stephen King claims 2000 words a day (Hence his voluminous career). Anne Rice writes 3000 day (A-h-h-mazing!). Ian McEwan, author of Atonement, writes 600 day with the hope of adding more as they tap his head. I like his style as he surely gets me better than Mr. King or Ms. Rice would.
How Can One Help Their Daily Word Count?
After reading several blogs and articles, like this one, here are some tips I believe work.
- Pick a Productive Place to Write. If you’re fortunate to have your own office or library – boom – you’re a winner. Other places like a bookstore or a favorite coffeehouse may stoke your writing embers. Quiet or lively, pick a spot that works for you.
- Sit and write. Create a schedule to plop in front of a computer or in a chair with a notebook and write. Depending on your schedule, you can etch an hour a day, or if your schedule allows, twenty minutes at a time. Keep this schedule active and your words will increase.
- Listen to Music. I create music playlists based on my stories, which include songs about characters, the story’s plot, or a setting. Losing yourself in the music could help those words flow.
- Outline. Okay. I’m a general pantser. But, I write my chapters with some sense of what I want to write. Does your outline have to be elaborate? No. Just write a few sentences or a paragraph about character/setting/scene goal and you’re good.
- Jot Your Stats in a Notebook/Computer File. Keep track of your daily goal. As you increase your mileage, you may decide to change your goal all together. I keep track in a daily planner. Then, I can see which days I’m more active than not. Mondays work best for me. Wednesdays not so much.
- Coffee! Tea! Shots of Adreneline! They help a lot. Caffeine can be a healthy energy source (Don’t quote me. I’m using personal experience, of course). Use in moderation. Remember, there is a reason writers hang in coffeehouses. Words and lattes work best together.
So yeah. I’ll stick with a minimum 500 words with the intent of writing more as the day progresses. I think it’s fair to me and my WIP. So far so good.
If you write, what’s your daily word count? Feel free to share in the comments section.