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#SCEstonIsWriting: 1st Month

Posted: April 1, 2020

A little more than a month ago, after watching a video about managing your writing as if it is a business, I decided to implement a simple action plan to increase my writing productivity. You can read more about how this came to be in one of my previous posts: Writing Tips: Writing as a Business, and a New Start.

The Stranger of Ul DarakAs part of the plan, I set out to write at least five days a week, to review/write an average of 500 words a day and to post my progress on Twitter (under the hashtag #SCEstonIsWriting). In addition, I set the goal of completing the current revision of The Stranger of Ul Darak by March 31.

I kept track of my progress in a spreadsheet (I am known to like spreadsheets and lists, so this is right up my alley). Here is a summary of what I was able to accomplish:

  • I wrote 25 out of 31 days (success!)
  • I reviewed/re-wrote on average 1042 words a day for a total of 26,048 words (BIG success!)
  • I posted about my progress 39 times on Twitter (success!)
  • I completed the first revision of Stranger and started on the second one (partial success... my goal was to be done with Stranger by the end of March, but I forgot to take in consideration that I was doing two revisions back to back this time around - the first one is done, and the second one under way)

Below, I've included a graph of my progress, comparing each week. The high peak during week four was when I started the second pass, which requires fewer edits/changes. With that being said, you'll notice that the next two days showed negative word counts. I got stuck on a chapter and instead of making progress, I found myself going backward, because I restarted from the beginning of the chapter twice.

I don't know if this type of information is interesting to anyone other than me, but I thought I'd share it. It has been an enlightening experience so far. It shows that I don't need to wait for the perfect conditions to write (for example, I wrote in the kitchen, in the basement, even in the car, sometimes for only 5 minutes). It also demonstrates that I can have a bad day and go through a mere 25 words (March 11, at which time a Windows' update prevented me from writing) and follow up with days of 321 and 2,398 words (writing in the morning on the kitchen island in both cases). All of this sounds obvious, but when you are working on something for a while, it is easy to lose your way. Sometimes, the only thing you need is to take a step back and re-focus.

Since the experience has been so beneficial, the plan for April is to continue with the plan, with two updated goals:

Currently, I feel proud of what I've accomplished over the past month and am excited about the upcoming few months. I wanted to bring a few stories to completion this year, and if I stick with this plan, I can see that happening.

Keywords: Life, Platform, Writing