How Do I Know I’m On Fire?

May WordcountI’m on fire!

In a good way. How do I know, other than that uncomfortable burning sens… wait…wrong fire. (I’ll save that for TMI Tuesday.)

OK… how do I know? Because…SPREADSHEETS!

The first few days aren’t accurate (I actually started on May 2) but the ap I was using to keep track of my wordcount turned out to not work the way I wanted it to so I gave in and created a new worksheet in the Excel workbook I use for my Kingdom Come series. My ROW80 goals are usually thus:

  • 500 words in a day isn’t great, but at least it’s something
  • 1000 words a day is acceptable
  • 2000 words a day is good

Notice those three days with few or no words? I was working on a submission package that required a query, a synopsis, and a brief explanation of my series plan. I also researched which editor at the publishing house to address the query to.

In other words, I’ve been very productive this week!

So productive I forgot to write this weekly update last Tuesday. Or Wednesday. Ah, well, you’re getting it Thursday this week.

Now, about that ap…

NaNoChartDuring NaNoWriMo authors have a lovely little word count icon that lets us update our wordcount daily. I can update it a hundred times a day if I want, but it will break it into days for me when all is said and done. This tool has a lovely goal line that instantly shows us whether we’re ahead or behind of achieving 50,000 words in a month. I’ve seen similar things on other writers’ websites.

Yet, when I went in search of such a widget to put on my blog, or even an ap to use on my phone, I was frustrated. I did eventually find a phone ap, but half time time my phone is in my purse, nowhere near my desk.

The advice I kept hearing was ‘just use a spreadsheet!’ yet I resisted. It wasn’t lack of know-how; I taught Excel up until last year. (I quit to concentrate on my writing career.) A spreadsheet wasn’t what I wanted… I wanted a widget, gosh darn it!

As I said, I gave in. It’s not difficult to take either the wordcount chart or the wordcount graph, turn it into a jpg, and add it to a blog post. It isn’t the widget I wanted, but it works. I find it very encouraging to look back and say “Four thousand words? Two days in a row? Wow!”

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About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice.
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One Response to How Do I Know I’m On Fire?

  1. nagrij says:

    lol I don’t use a spreadsheet, I’m much more low tech. I just scribble the starting word count each day on a sheet of scrap paper. When I add a thousand to that count, I’ve done the minimum accepted effort, but I can continue. Next day, regardless of how much I’ve written the day before, it’s the same process. There is no sitting pat because I’ve written 5k words the day before, and the process is day and day out.

    All that said, 30k words a month is my standard; 50k actually seems a bit excessive to me.

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