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melLkinder
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Age: 35
Location: Northville, MI

PostSubject: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 4:16 am

Do any of you set daily word count goals? If so, what are they?
I recently set a goal of 1,000 per day and found it difficult, so I lowered it to 500. That seems to be working out better for me. Some days I can't think of a good adjective to save my life.
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Al Stevens
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 10:56 am

Here's my take on writing quotas.

http://alstevens.blogspot.com/2011/11/final-kiss-at-seven.html
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melLkinder
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 5:32 pm

Let me rephrase. A minimum word count. I have to write at least 500 words a day.
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Al Stevens
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 5:38 pm

Why?
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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 7:53 pm

I've always said I like to average about a page a day so that in one year I will have written 365 pages that a good edit will reduce to 200 plus. I don't stick to it, but I like having that as a "loose" goal.
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Shelagh
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 7:56 pm

It worked for me, Al. I set the goal of writing a book that would be out by Christmas. I wrote 1,000 words a day (except for three days) from the end of August until mid November. The book is now out on Lulu with a total of 75,225 words:

http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/mr-planemakers-diving-machine/18696721

I've added a 20% discount to the book and Lulu are offering a further 25% off, so getting the book out was good timing!


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Al Stevens
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:15 pm

Someone pointed out that with a quota (minimum or maximum) the writer keeps looking down at the counters to check progress, which pulls attention away from the story. I found that to be what it did to me. Now I just write until I need a break or have run out of things to say. If I set a minimum, there would be nights when I would't get to bed. Smile

Whatever works...
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melLkinder
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:49 pm

Al,

Nights when you don't get to bed... I can relate to that. Unfortunately, that is when most of my best ideas surface. Very Happy
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Shelagh
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Fri Nov 25, 2011 10:39 pm

Al Stevens wrote:
Someone pointed out that with a quota (minimum or maximum) the writer keeps looking down at the counters to check progress, which pulls attention away from the story.
I didn't do that. I didn't sit down and force myself to write 1,000 words. Sometimes the number of words in a long session would be a mere 100+ words followed later in the day by a shorter period that would produce 500 words. The 400 words (approx) would be added just before I went to bed; the longer it took, the later I went to bed!

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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:05 am

That's why I don't think in terms of words. When the next page turns over, I know I am at my minimum and moving forward...
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melLkinder
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Sat Nov 26, 2011 2:03 am

DK,
That is a great way of looking at it; one page at a time.

The writing program I use counts the words in each scene AND tells me the total written each day. That's why I use the word count. The bad thing is, when I change a scene and wind up deleting words, I can end up with a negative word count. Sad But I still think a -500 words holds (almost) as much weight as +500. I like that the program keeps a running log and I can move my scenes around by dragging and dropping them into different chapters. Oh boy, now I'm off topic.
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Shelagh
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Sat Nov 26, 2011 9:59 am

You're on topic. Mel! Daily word counts do include the deleted words. That's why writing 50,000 words at 1,000 words per day takes longer than 50 days! Keep going. Keep setting your targets.

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dkchristi
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Sat Nov 26, 2011 11:31 am

I have a writing program - I just never used it. Now, all my computers are down but for the netbook and all it has is Microsoft Works. I move scenes the old fashioned way - cut and paste.
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alj
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:11 pm

Mel, the writing program you describe sounds like one I have been using with my latest projects, called yWriter.

It has been a big help in staying organized. I like being able to plan and outline scenes before I am actually ready to begin writing dialog, etc.

I do not aim for a specific word count per day. Some days I sit at the computer for such a long time that my old body is stiff and I remember that I have been too involved to stop even to eat.

those days balance with the "drier" ones when I spend most of my time up and moving to get my daily tasks caught up and get out into the real world.

At my age and stage in life, it's about taking each day as it comes, I guess.

Ann
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Abe F. March
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PostSubject: Re: daily word count goals   Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:44 pm

Ann, your program is much like mine when I'm writing. I plan to get back to writing when I return to my home PC and get distracting details out of the way. I think writing is a mindset. Inspiration dictates. If don't feel like it, I don't do it. The days of "must do" have diminished with age. Meeting a deadline is an exception and once committed, I try to keep it. I've never set a daily word count. When the story ends, it ends. Then I check to see if it is enough to meet the criteria of a prospective publisher. My thinking is based along the lines of making a speech. Going beyond what keeps the attention of the audience doesn't end well. Stop on a high. Adding words to increase word count is not done at the end. Embellishment can be done with descriptions of people places and things. Adding another episode to the story also works provided it does not detract from the flow of the story or affect the climax build-up.
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