It's scary how easy it is to lose time and *not* write.
My first drafts clock in somewhere around 50,000 words. They come with huge gaps and hardly any description. But it's a first draft, and as everyone knows, first drafts are crap.
So why do they take me so long?
Ten or so years ago, I wrote 50,000 words in two weeks. Two freaking weeks!
It was utter dross, but I wrote it.
Then, a few months later, I did it again!
It was more dross, but I was really enjoying myself. 25,000 words a week, or about 3,500 words a day.
It was awesome.
I've also never achieved this level of output since. But somewhere along the way, I *think* the writing improved, so there are payoffs to being slower.
Here's how to write 50,000 words.
By writing the words!
Writing 100 words a day, every day, will take 500 days (1 yr, 4.5 months) to get to 50,000 words.
Writing 250 words a day, every day, will take 200 days (nearly 7 months) to get to 50,000 words.
Writing 500 words a day, every day, will take 100 days, or about 3 months and a week-ish, to get to 50,000 words.
Writing 1,000 words a day, every day, will take 50 days, or less than 2 months, to get to 50,000 words.
Writing every day means writing on weekends as well. This isn't always practical or even possible.
Writing 1,000 words a day, 5 times a week, will take 10 weeks, (less than 3 months) to get to 50,000 words.
Obviously, if I write more words each day, I'll get there even faster. But I don't want to put too much pressure on myself by setting unreachable goals and failing to meet them (and subsequently feeling like a failure).
I'm going for the 1,000 words a day model, with weekends off.
Today I added 1,000 words to a mansucript that's now at 23,600 words. Which means I *should* finish this draft in the next five weeks, right?
Have I mentioned lately what a hypocrite I am? I'm GREAT at dishing out advice. Terrible at taking it. Even my own.