Writing Update: February 2, 2021 (Writing Speed pt.1)

Hello dear readers. I was doing some research on some of the longer books in my personal library to figure out the word count (sometimes estimated). There’s a big difference in page count depending on hardcover, paperback, and which edition is being printed, so I thought going off of word count would be a more accurate reading of a book’s length.

The reason I was looking up this information is because I wanted to find a desired minimum length for the book I am writing. I currently have ~27,000 words written in my current book, which is longer than anything I’ve ever written before, but its hardly a tenth of some of the longer books in my library.

I don’t expect my first ever book to be over a thousand pages. I am neither a skilled enough writer or world-builder to create such a story, but I figured something within the 500-750 page range would be a good goal.

It’s tough to come up with an exact word-count to fill a 500 page book. There are many factors that change the length, so instead I set a word count goal of 250,000 words.

My first draft is rough. There are plenty of places where I have noted I want to add more detail, and I have barely begun to tell the story, so I am far from worried about hitting that word count. I am more worried about hitting that word count in a reasonable amount of time.

I did the rough mental math and came to the conclusion that I have spent roughly a month’s worth of days of writing my book, over a four month period.

To me personally, those numbers are appalling. I told myself I want a finished first draft and a second draft well underway by the end of 2021, but if I keep at this pace, I won’t reach my goal for another year and a half – two years.

Everyone will say “everyone writes at their own pace” and all that nonsense (no offense I just hate people encouraging me), but I will not accept that. That is much too slow to write a book. Some authors come out with two or three books a year, and I can’t even come up with a draft in that time?

I know where my problems are, and what I can do to increase my writing productivity, I just find it amazing that some authors can work a full-time job, raise a family, and write a book. I can barely manage two of those three things.

This isn’t meant to be a post about me complaining. I will reach my goal. I will have the first draft done and a second draft well underway by the time the year is done, I just need to focus on what is important to me, and what can be left behind.

There will be a part two to this “series” where I will go into a bit further detail on how many words I write a week on average, how much time I dedicate to writing a day, and more, but this topic was most on my mind this week so I thought it would be good to share.

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