1. PastPresentNFuture
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    PastPresentNFuture Senior Member

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    Daily Word Count

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by PastPresentNFuture, Jul 3, 2011.

    Just Wondering how many words should I write a day? I'm a fairly busy person, who's taking driving lessons, summer school, trying to work out, and find a job, and trying to learn french and vietnamese at the same time. So how many words should I write a to be reasonable?
     
  2. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    As many or as few as you want. Some days I can write for hours, other days I don't feel like writing at all. Writing should be a hobby you enjoy, not an extra job.
     
  3. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Your work schedule is up to you. Some writers spew out words like a firehose, others hand-craft them one at a time. Everybody has to work around their regular lives. There is no one answer as to how many words you should write in a day.
     
  4. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    there are no "shoulds". you write as much as you can "afford" with the time you have. It's an individual choice. I don't write the same amount every day, but I try to write at least something every day even when I feel less motivated, even if it is just a page or even half a page in the worst cases. I think it is also a question about what priotity the writing has in your life. if it is very important to you you are going to find the time somehow, believe me. :) even while commuting or the last hour before going to bed.
     
  5. Gigi_GNR
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    Gigi_GNR Guys, come on. WAFFLE-O. Contributor

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    Agreed. I think you should set a goal to get a certain amount of words, but don't make it a chore you have you do. Writing should be fun.
     
  6. darkhaloangel
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    darkhaloangel Active Member

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    Try somewhere in the region of 500 to 2000.
     
  7. JeffS65
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    JeffS65 Contributing Member

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    I write because I feel I have something worth writing. If it ain't there, I don't do it. It seems odd to me that to write a certain amount because...

    I mean, I saw Mike Myers on Inside the Actors Studio and he said writing was a discipline for him and practice was good to develop the craft. That does make sense. However, I'd feel odd writing for writings sake even if for a story I was working on.

    If you were to write for, say, a competition such as this site does for fun to stretch yourself, good stuff. Getting the hang of writing for a purpose isn't a bad thing.

    However, I don't think getting words down just because is something that adds to the quality.
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    ditto the 'no shoulds'... each writer has his/her own needs and abilities life and writing-wise...

    don't worry about how much anyone else writes... being a writer isn't a speed contest...
     
  9. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    Write when you write. Write until you stop.

    I personally look to write 1000-1400 words in a single session, because that's about the range for chapter length for me, and if I write one chapter, I usually want to do something else once I finish.

    You just need to find your own range.
     
  10. psychotick
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    psychotick Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hi,

    I write every day but have no specific word count goal. I just write what I feel like writing and stop when I've had enough or want to / need to do something else. If you try to do more you risk turning an enjoyable passtime into work.

    The only time I would push myself is when I'm editing for publishing, and then its mainly because I'm excited about getting something finished. And when that's finished I'll often not write anything at all for a few days.

    Cheers.
     
  11. Jewels
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    Jewels Member

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    I think it's more useful to set aside a certain amount of time each day rather than aim for a specific word count. I try to spend at least an hour a day on my writing, and the output varies quite a lot from day to day.
     
  12. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    I usually write about 1,000 to 2,000 in a day, except sometimes, unfortunately, there are days I can't write. I'd say I write about 5 days a week? But as others have said, it's different for everyone, so don't compare yourself to others. It'll also vary from day to day. Most I ever wrote in one day was about 7,000. This was for a Nanowrimo event at a local coffee shop. One of my friends did about 10K. And there have also been days where I'm just not feeling it and I only do a couple hundred.
     
  13. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    I can't get anything done without a little pressure from myself. That's why every morning, I figure out how busy I'll be and set off a time and decide how many words I'll write. If I've got nothing to do that day, I can schedule to write 5000 words (note that I type extremely fast), or if I'm very busy I just go up to 500. 200 is the very minimum I allow myself to write each day. Even if I'm in a bad mood or don't actually feel like writing, after about 15 minutes I get into the zone again.
     
  14. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    I like that chain of thoughts, but wouldn't it be better to set a certain amount of time instead of words? If you don't have anything to do that day, you could tell yourself to write four or five hours no matter how many or few words you'll manage to write. If you are busy, you can still squeeze in thirty minutes - an hour of writing. That way you don't have to force yourself to write down stuff you aren't happy with just to get things done.
     
  15. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    That won't work, because say I decide to write from 4 to 5 pm. If I really don't want to write, I just sit there and wait for the time to run out and end up writing like a 100 words or so. If I set a certain word limit, it puts more pressure on me and I have to write that much. And if I start writing at 4 and know I need write 800 words by 5, it REALLY puts pressure on me. Though since I don't start writing until I have the entire plot figured out, it goes pretty quickly and with the exceptions of certain difficult scenes (that I need to spend a lot of time on when editing anyway), most of it is actually (surprisingly to me) quite well written. Naturally, there will be some awkward sentences, and now and then the characters don't speak like they should, but there's rarely anything I'm really unhappy with.

    I never work like that when I edit though. Just for first and second drafts. When I edit I really need to just focus and do things at the pace I'm in the mood for right then.
     
  16. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's all or nothing for me a lot of the time.

    In those rare times I have a few consecutive hours free, I can get in the zone and just write & get a lot done. But there are times when I don't write at all. Could be weeks/months.

    For editing and such, I just force myself to do it, until I can see the finishing line & the project is done.
     

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