Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Average Daily Word Count

... or AWDC - as I have just cunningly coined it.

I am going to reveal this knowing full well there are many authors out there who do a goodly bit more in a day - and my publishers will be crying "Write faster, dang it!", yet since fellow word-wrestler R.J. Anderson has asked I shall dare to admit:

1000 words/day


I have had brilliant days of 1500+ (even 2700 one day) but when all is averaged, time searching through all my notebooks for the right snippets of information and periods a.f.k. (away from keyboard) are included (including several trips interstate) it works out to the above.

If you want to go on the usual word count I achieve on the days I actually write it creeps up a little to about:

1300 words/day or so.

I feel a bit better about that.

I hope this helps Ms Anderson - how does it compare?

Dare I ask what ADWCs do you other writers achieve?


Femina said...

But of course actual writing is not all it takes to write a good book. I'd much rather read 500 words that are the result of solid research and thoughtful creativity than 5000 words that were bashed out on a keyboard for the sake of a high ADWC.

I have a friend who's a songwriter and she says that sometimes songwriting involves locking herself in a room for a couple of hours, staring at the wall and listening to music by other people. She may not have written anything herself at the end of that two hours but it's all part of the process and usually results in a better end product.

R.J. Anderson said...

As far as I'm concerned, you're doing amazingly. I set myself a word goal of at least 750 a day, and I've been struggling many days to meet even that.

The problem is that I am an obsessive polish-as-I-go writer, and that I can't bear to go on until everything I've written so far is in (to my mind) reasonably decent shape. But since this is the first draft, there are bits I've written which are horribly redundant and go in circles (or worse, don't achieve anything at all), which only a full-scale revision can cure. So I have to just grit my teeth and forge onward in the hope that I can straighten all that out in the next round... a discipline I am still struggling to learn.

So if you can turn out 1000 words a day on average, and some days more, I'd say, hooray for you! *applauds*

Sam Hranac said...

Can we count kr@p that we'll need to trim the living bajeebers out of? If so I'm up around 1,500. Forward progress over all? 600.


D.M. Cornish said...

Time to fess up: yesterday I only managed 500 words... don't tell anyone.

(Actually there was some publishy kind of stuff that was bumming me out - but that is just a rather transaparent excuse).

R.J. Anderson said...

Aha, but I am only at 375 words so far and I don't even have the excuse of "publishy stuff" to depress me, so I am STILL a bigger slacker than you are! Muah ha ha ha ha!

Oh, well. Who was it said "that which is contemptible is better than that which is not at all"? At least I've written SOME words today, and am off to see if I can write some more.

D.M. Cornish said...

Write on!

Anonymous said...

Just wondering. How does an author know it´s going to be a certain amount of books, hinting on book 2 cover, trilogy?

R.J. Anderson said...

I am hijacking this post to point to you to the latest over at Fuse #8, where in the comments section Betsy Bird and I agree that we would readily buy MBT jewelry if there were any, and declare our mad love for Sebastipole. Shameful frivolity, I know, but there you have it.

D.M. Cornish said...

I know for a fact that the lamplighter's agent would be very flattered by said sentiments. (not so sure Ms Bird will like Licurius so much after some little revelations we have of him in Book 3... ooh, did I just give something away!?)

As to knowing about how many books it will take to tell a story, anna: well, when Book 1 nearing completion I was handed a 3 book contract by my original publishers, Scholastic Australia/Omnibus. I suppose it has always been assumed that this is how long the series will be.

Talking with the fine fellows of looking to make a film of MBT, they correctly identified ook 1 as Act 1, Book 2 as Act 2, and so in the usual way of things Book 3 will be Act 3 - and 3 acts make a play (or movie script).

Am I making much sense?

The short answer is that I don't actually know what I am doing and am just making this all up as I go.

Sam Hranac said...


And I thought I was excited to get my hooks into book 3 already!

Don't feel bad about introducing new plots near the end of book 3. I wouldn't mind a 4 or 8 book trilogy.

Anonymous said...

If You have collected that much info there must be a lot of stories to tell, not just about Rossamund. Perhaps there will be a spinoff-trilogy?

The hardest thing is to wait for another book. I´m waiting for book 3 in the Vren-trilogy, which is supposed to come out this year. It´s written by a swedish author, Lotta Olivercrona. The book is a mix between fantasy/sci-fi. Pretty good but nothing like MBT.

Snooze said...

Don't worry about your words :D I've often tried to start a story, and I might type heaps of words in a few minutes, I simply end up a few chapters in when I sorta don't know what to do... so it just sits on my computer until I have an idea to add. (So far I have about 5 half started stories, and I doubt I'll ever finish them with school ASSignments in the way, and the fact I have no clue how to continue them). lol.
I know of one series and I think the author was a bit rushed, and wrote a story that wasn't as good as the first books, and I was upset :(. So make sure you write goodly even if I we have to wait for a while...
So even though I want the next one to come out tomorrow... lol... make sure you take your time...
P.S Your books are one of my favourites so if you stuff it up I could possibly begin stalking you with hate mail :D - No pressure or anything!
lol nah.. keep up the great work

(if this posted twice i'm sorry but the computer was sorta being weird)

Anonymous said...

Hello, there! I just voted in the poll to the left --> and its telling me to "leave comment"
Not sure where to leave said comment, I guess I'll just do it here!! (hope no-one minds:3)

Well, if I were to be any sort of monste-slayer, I would have to control fire...maybe a variation on a fire-eater/breather at carnivals?

just a thought:3

And If I could, I would steal Sebastipole all for myself!
I would also buy any MBT jewlery adn wear it with pride!

Anonymous said...

...and chalk another one up here for the Girls After Sebastipole Society. wow. i thought i was the only one, too.

i salute you all for your bold admittance of your wordcounts. and i think i will keep mine to myself...:)

Sam Hranac said...

Then you will not find my attraction to the Branden Rose too shocking.

D.M. Cornish said...

Declaring an attraction to the Duchess-in-Waiting of Naimes is a dangerous game, my friend, a dangerous game.... ;}

The perfect place to leave your comment ellie! I like the idea very much - if it were up to me I'd condiser such a person as a weird variation on a scourge: destructive, personally dangerous chemical user with an interesting delivery system.

I feel very saluted monday - keep your secrets if you must; I shall hire a leer for a sleuth and find out for myself.

As to spin-off-thingies, anna, we will just have to wait and see: I certainly have my thoughts... Lord willing, I shall have opportunity to bring them to you all.

Thank you for your encouragement, susan, I will take as long as is reasonable to make the story as good and meaty and worthy as I can. I had several half-start stories myself, it is hard to know where to go with a tale, and self-belief fluctuates too wildly for consistent output: I reckon when you are ready you will knuckle down and push through - or maybe Providence will throw you a motivator as has happened with me.

Snooze said...

well could my motivator be MBT and i suddenly start writing a book about this wonderful land full of monsters? It could become a really good series, and I might add a boy into the story, and machines that work from organs... hmm... this could become something!

lol... or I could just ignore that so I don't get fined with copywrite :D

I find that my stories seem too childish and weird, so I sorta stop writing cuz i doubt they'll go anywhere... but who knows... one day I vow I will publish at least book!


btw - do you use pen n paper, or a computer?

D.M. Cornish said...

Both actually - but computer to do the final text.

As to your "stories seem[ing] too childish and weird", I know the feeling. That, from experience, is the wicked work of self-doubt rather than a failure of your ideas. I am sure your creation needs refinement but you can push through that "this is all a load of doody!" feeling - if you dare - there is a good place beyond the fear.

(At least once a week I have the sinking, "Oh no whay rot am I writing" feeling - very distressing. Self-examination and is good, but not self-destruction)

Again, I reckon when you are ready to you will and shall.

I sound like some tacky life-guru... I'll stop now.

Snooze said...

well a tacky life-guru is possibly better than none :D
Thanks for the tips

S.F.W. said...

I have - once or twice - managed 5000 words in a day. My usual average - what I push to, even if I don't feel like it, is 1000.

But, then, I'm far from regular and not near disciplined enough to actually manage that every day. My current real average is about 2000 words a week. which is about two writing sessions. I have plenty of excuses for this - none of them good.

D.M. Cornish said...

I know the feeling.

Anonymous said...

S.F.W - I think having children makes a pretty good excuse! I have all the time in the world and write not a sausage. D.M - I am very much enjoying your journeys. I have been a fan since I got an early draft of MBT1 off Dyan in my previous guise as a Scholastic Rep.
May continued success (and lashings of froodiness) abound!

u2att said...

Thanks for the art mention. I need lots more practice drawing. And by the way I'm 49. (young on the inside)


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