Today started off well, and I credit taking a much-needed day off yesterday. I feel as if I’d slept most of the day, even when I was in the company of others. It’s worth noting this, because not getting proper rest has a heavy impact on both the quantity and quality of the work. Too many times I have pushed myself only to discover that the things I wrote late in the day were complete gibberish and totally unusable. As that is one of my major concerns with this / Day Setting Design Challenge, I will be curious to see how the next few days go.
The Day 4 Breakdown
Initially I thought that doing 1,000 words per hour was pushing it. When you divide by 60 it’s only 16 words per minute (rounding down). Even 1,500 words per hour would be just 25 wpm. I know that I type faster than that, and I wonder if I’m not pushing myself hard enough. The reality is, I do need that time to pause, thinking about what I’m writing and choosing my words carefully. See the bit above about cranking out unintelligible word salad.
The six hourly word sprints broke down as follows. Hour 1 started strong with 1,444 words, and hour 2 yielded 1,458. By hour 3 I felt like I was slowing down with only 1,381. so I took a 30 minute break. Thinks picked up in hour 4 with 1,570, and as I was in a flow state I rolled right into hour 5 and hit 1,680 words. In hour 6, though, I ran out of steam, and quit with only 384 words written.
The Day 4 Results
Things are going well overall. I’m getting into the rhythms of things, discovering what works and considering way to tweak what doesn’t. Onward to Day 5!
Day 1 total: 3,519 words against a goal of 3,000
Day 2 total: 5,214 words against a goal of 4,000
Yesterday’s Day 3 total: 5,853 words against a goal of 5,000
Today’s Day 4 total: 7,917 words against a goal of 6,000
Week to Date total: 22,503 words against a goal of 18,000
That’s 4,503 words in the bank against future word count goals
Hours spent writing today: 6
Hours spent writing week to date: 18
You can read the rest of the entries in this series at this link.
Dean Wesley Smith’s book Writing a Novel in Seven Days: A Hands-On Example is available from Amazon in Kindle format and paperback editions. My book Setting Design for Writers and Roleplayers is available from DriveThruRPG in PDF, ebook, and Kindle formats.