Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Setting Word Count Goals and What It Could Mean To You!

Hello everyone!

I am a big believer in setting a daily word count goal. If you are able to sit and do it all in one sitting fabulous, or if it takes a few stolen moments throughout the day, at least make the committment.

If you are serious about writing as a career, you have to take yourself and your writing seriously. You have to make deadlines for yourself, and meet them. Treat it like a full or part time job.

I was doing some math trying to figure out how I could reasonably write 6 books a year. Sounds astonishing doesn't it? Well believe it or not, it really isn't.

Here's how it works:

If I write roughly 2000 words a day, 5 days a week, that will equal 520,000 words for the year. Some of the novels I write are 50K, some 75K and some 95K, that doesn't even include the short stories I write. If I up it to 2200 words a day I could get in a couple of novellas with my six novels.

So let's get started with you. I think you should set a goal to write at LEAST 5 days a week, I often write 6 or 7. Even if you think you can only get in 100 a day, thats a start.

In Stephen King's book On Writing, he suggests if you're serious that your write a minimum of 1000 words a day, for 6 days a week.

You've committed to writing at least 5 days a week no matter what, and you've chosen the amount of words you will write come hell or high water, you will get those words down! If you write more fantastic!

100 = 26,000 words a year (A novella)
200 = 52,000 words a year (A category)
350 = 91,000 words a year (A novel or 3 novellas, or 1 category and 2 novellas)
500 = 130,000 words a year
750 = 195,000 words a year
1000 = 260,000 words a year (3 novels!!!)
1500 = 390,000 words a year
2000 = 520,000 words a year (6 novels!!!)
2500 = 650,000 words a year (At least 7 novels and a novella)

The formula to figure this out is really simple. Take the number of words you've committed to write x the number of days you will write x 52 (weeks in the year) = your words for the year.

Just remember that all you need is a few hours a day. One of the things that I do to help myself, which may also drive some of you insane, is I work on 3-4 WIPS at a time. That way if I get stuck at 750 words on one, I move on to the next until I hit my word count for the day. As far as editing goes, I still make sure I get my word count in, even if I have edits to do. It just means I'm at my computer longer that day.

So let's hear your committments!!! What are your goals?


  1. I'm part of the HTH challenge and it's really helped my writing. I read on Linda Lael Miller's blog that she writes 5000 words a day! I'm in awe--but then to publish as many books as she does in a year I'm guessing she has to! Off to write now!

  2. Well whatever you do is working! Smile! Congrats on your wonderful DCL 3rd Quarter Sales!!!

  3. I just had to turn out a 10,000 word story in 5 days and found out the hard way that you CAN write 2,000 words a day. Don't think I'm going to forget it, either. And I learned the trick of working on two manuscripts at a time. Does this mean I do 4,000?? Yikes!