Originally, back when I first started to write and I worked on 1-3 books at once, I was writing only on the weekends. Funnily enough, the word count for individual books was at average of 7,000 words per book per day of writing. Which meant it was about 7,000 words on each book per week.
Then I started to change things up. Those 7,000 words per day on the weekends was actually 8 or more hours of work that I was doing. Occasionally I could hit up to 12,000 words on a day I believe it was. If I went into my archives (before I moved to WordPress) I could find that information, but right now, I don’t have it handy.
For that sort of writing, I finished 3 books in a 6-month period.
Last year I started writing my four books at once, which is the most I’ve ever done at once. I wanted to change my writing time so that I could increase my writing production. I had hoped that by doing it every day of the week, in the morning, and then my normal all day writing on the weekends, that I could increase my numbers.
I found out that by writing in a book every day, and changing to morning writing for an hour, that I dropped my writing count per week numbers. Because then by the weekend, I had lost my writing all day habit, and I have to rebuild that. It is also because I just didn’t do it. I ended up getting at most, a few hundred words per day to one thousand per book per week. Because it’s four books, at the most on any of the books, that meant 2,000 words per week. Not good. It’s been a year, and I’m still writing. Granted, I know I’m writing better and doing more detail, but I should’ve hit done by now, even with the numbers.
So in one year, I haven’t finished writing a novel (I have done a few short stories) yet.
About two weeks ago, I decided to try a different writing method again. We will see about the numbers this time. I should point out that I don’t keep changing things because of some competition to finish a book faster just because. It’s purely that I love writing, and my stories, and I want the ability to write more. My editing takes a while no matter what. So I can’t rightly believe that even writing a thousand stories, I’m going to have that many published. My editing can’t keep up at all with that. I am a tedious editor. And that’s before I send it to my editor to look over. I want to increase my word counts for the pure reason that I want to finish stories faster so I can write more. I want to get all that I can get out now while I can. None of us know how long we have. So to deprive myself of the ability to get out as many stories as I can for people to enjoy and love one day, is to do a disservice to readers, and myself who I do consider a reader of my own work.
So it’s purely to push myself to be better. To be a better writer, write better stories, never base myself off one book, and to tell as many stories as I possibly can while I still can.
My current writing is to work on only one of the novels that I’m writing per week. No matter what. On the weekends, maybe work on one or two others, but otherwise, I am fully immersing myself in just one novel for M-F and doing my writing. So far, because I’ve also finally managed to get my stubborn body to wake up at 6, and be out of bed by 6:30 AM, I am also getting in my exercise in the morning and able to focus better on my writing by the time I do start. (I live with my elder parent to benefit her, and once she wakes up, my name is constantly called for a million reasons. So mornings I try to get as much done as I need to that I have to have focus for.)
I am crossing my fingers that my numbers increase. I would write more in the day if I could, but right now that isn’t an option. The weekends can be if I set myself to do it, but with everything I’m doing during the week, I try to do my creative writing studies on the weekend, and otherwise read and relax. I do still try to get an hour of writing in though.
My numbers right now are at anywhere from 500-2,000 per day and I still love myself and what I do. That’s really what it’s about too. Don’t ever push yourself for numbers just because. Unless you’re a writer with a deadline and a contract. Then good luck. But for me, I don’t have that stress so I’m doing what I can, when I can, but always, always, always I try to get at least 30 minutes to an hour of writing a day, or in word count it’s 1,000 words. If I am below that number, I refer to the time. Did I do at least 30 minutes? Or I go back to my default with money too. Is it more than I had yesterday? Then I am okay. I write as much as I possibly can, while still making sure it’s not turning this from something I love into drudgery.
If you want to challenge yourself as well, and try out different methods, I’d love a comment to hear about your process. Or just to hear about your process in general. It’s always inspiring to listen to the various ways that people write. And it’s also because of that that I am keeping track. I know I love hearing about Stephen King’s writing process as a fan, and a writer, so I thought I would share for that purpose as well.