Word count goals – Love it or hate it?

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Whilst I had my own little writers getaway back in the summer holidays,  I committed to reaching a word count.  I was happy to report that I managed to reach this word count within that time.  I though that it would be something that would keep me on target with my writing when I was back at home and in my normal life routine.

Unfortunately I was very, very wrong.  Not only did I not manage to keep up with my word count but it also seemed to stress me out.  Life has a way of getting in the way.

As with all parents, kids need ferrying around, help with their homework and they need feeding — like every day! Throw my day job into the mix and the word count goals turned into a far distant dream.  Or more accurately, a bit of a nightmare.

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People have been asking when this novel of mine will be finished, but with writing cut back to the bones during my working week, or should I say really only to a few hours during my weekend.  The end did not seem to be in sight.

So now I have to decide if sticking to a word count goal is going to be a help, or a hinderance in finishing my novel.

At the beginning of November I saw all over Instagram NaNoWriMo, where you sign up and commit to writing a certain number of words every day with the goal of completing 50,000 words at the end of the 30 days.  Although I have not signed up for this, it has motivated me to write everyday, even if it’s just a few hundred words.  This has been slowly increasing and over the last weeks or so I have not only written every day but I have managed to complete a few thousand words and I am almost up to 60,000 words of my novel.

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So for me so far I have learnt my writing schedule is more manageable when I leave it flexible, after all I am writing this book because I am enjoying writing.  I am confident with the ending (which I have already planned out), so as long as I concentrate on building my writing into my daily schedule I will not beat myself up that I have written to my dedicated word count.

Maybe if/when I become a famous author I will have to be more strict with my writing schedule to keep to the deadlines, but for now I will commit to just writing everyday and making it a manageable habit that I can stick to without going crazy.

If you have any hints or tips that you think may help me along the way, then I would love to know about them.




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