I’ve not mentioned my WIP in a while – for multiple reasons progress has been somewhere between slow and non-existent for several months, but the past couple of weeks I’ve been slowly getting back on the horse. Momentum is the most important thing for me in terms of getting those words on the page, so I’ve been working to write a little bit every day.
My method, uber-geeky as it is, is to give myself a minimum number of words to do that day (the other important thing for me is having a sense of avhievement, you see!) … that’s not the geeky bit, oh no, the geeky bit is the table I draw up – it looks something like this (remember my love of lists?):
Date Words Due Words Done Projected Total Actual Total
Mon 200 452 47,000 47,252
And it covers two sheets of A4 paper front and back, running up until roughly 120,000/end of October.
Yep. That geeky. I did warn you.
As I’m just starting up again, I’ve set myself a low target for the first couple of weeks, just 200 words per day. I know that’s a very low target, but my writing confidence is terribly tenuous at the moment and I think of it this way: if I write 400 words when my target was 200, I’ll feel great; if I write 400 words when my target was 600, I’ll have failed and will feel rubbish. Does that make sense? I hope so, because then, once I’ve got that boost from reaching my target every day, I’ll be upping my target to 400 (in about a week), and up again a week or two later. When I was writing T&Gw for my Masters, I was writing a minimum of 750 words per day (some days this ended up being as much as 1,500, and that’s on work-days with cleaning, cooking, etc), so I want to get back up to that level.
Anyway, the reason for all this explanation is that I’m really pleased – today I really didn’t feel like sitting down and writing, but I dutifully made myself (reminding myself that the word-count fairies would come after me otherwise – they’re scary little blighters!) and ended up writing the most I’ve managed to write in one day for a very long time: over 650 words. It might not seem like much (especially for you super-human people who can sit and write 3,000+ words in a day – how do you manage that?!), but for the girl getting back on that writing horse, who was only looking to write 200 words, it’s kind of a break-through moment. And hopefully it’s a good sign that I can get my first draft finished and begin on the editing by the end of this year … Something tells me I’m going to need those lucky symbols!