“Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” -T. Roosevelt
So let’s work on that nasty other half. 🙂
Earlier this month we talked about freeing yourself to write. But that book won’t write itself. Over the past year we’ve discussed outlining and how each author comes with their own strategies on how best to lay down their work. But something ties all authors together. That, my friends, is WORD COUNT.
Symbols on the page, without them we are nothing. And a book, a real doorstop of a book, that’s a daunting challenge.
Or is it?
First, some math.
How many words is a good solid book? Let’s go with 75,000. It could be less if we’re talking Young Adult (say 60,000 words), Middle Grade (40,000 words), or more if it’s Epic Fantasy or SciFi (say 90,000 words) but 75,000, we can all agree, this makes a novel.
Here are the numbers.
250 words a day.
300 days to a novel.
250 words, that’s like 10 Tweets, 1 page double spaced, a rant on Tumblr, the same amount of words you use when you text your best friend over the course of a day. If you write 250 words every day, you will have a book in less than a year. The easiest way to achieve this? Get rid of your best friend … 😉 but failing that, set aside a time during the day when you will pound this out. Routine can be your new best friend. Fifteen minutes to half an hour. That’s how long it takes to write a book.
Now, it’s all well and good to say this, but here’s what I want you to do.
WRITE IT DOWN. Make a contract with yourself. And then announce your goal publicly. Change the password on your accounts to IWILLWRITEABOOK – or some other affirmation that you will type in half a dozen times each day.
SET SMALL GOALS. A daily word count goal. A weekly goal. A monthly goal. Chart your goals. Announce them to the world, seek support from your friends and family.
Don’t worry about the end goal. The book. Many small goals are what make big goals achievable. With one eye on the finish line you lose sight of the task at hand (can you tell my next book has a motivational speaker in it?!).
VISUALIZE the goal. Yep, picture that book, all printed off and done. Focus. Turn off your WiFi if you have to. And write.
Do these things, and I promise you, you’ll have a shiny new doorstop by the end of 2016.
Categories: Writing Tips