Writing 1700 Words a Day: Week 1

As I mentioned last week, I am trying the NaNoWriMo challenge to see if I can write 50,000 words of fiction in 30 days.

Today will be my fifth day of writing at least 1700 words. (Technically, you only have to write 1667 words per day to reach the goal, but I prefer to round up the number.) So far, I have managed to do that. My word count as of last night was 7735 words, for an average of 1933 words per day.

The task has been both easier and more difficult than I anticipated. Before I started, I was worried about how long it would take to write that many words. Back when John and I first started writing Prophecy’s Malignant Son, it sometimes took me the entire day to finish 500 words. Although writing 500 words has now become much quicker and easier, jumping to 1700 words worried me a lot.

Apparently the discipline of regularly writing every day has paid off. Switching to 1700 words has made my writing day longer, but only by a few hours. If I start writing around 9:00 a.m., I am usually done by 3:00 p.m.

The real difficulty has been keeping ahead of the story. In the past, I tended to write chapter-by-chapter. I would focus my attention on the events and language of each chapter as I wrote it. At 500 words a day, for four days a week, I was usually able to complete a chapter every two weeks, which gave me plenty of time to plot upcoming chapters with my beloved co-author and to think ahead about each scene.

With the higher word count each day, I am racing through chapters. I’ve already finished one chapter this week and should have a second done this morning. I’m forced to think about the next chapter, even as I am completing the current one. John and I had prepared an outline for this new manuscript, but only a general one. Details still need to be hammered out. The two of us have been discussing the upcoming chapters constantly this week, even when we are driving or going for a walk in the neighborhood.

Anyway, I have to get back to writing. I’ve got 1700 words of fiction to produce today.

Talk to you next Friday with another update!

-Susan

p.s. I hope there aren’t a lot of typos in this post. I don’t have time for much proof-reading.

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