1. Frankovitch
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    Frankovitch Member

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    What pace do you write at?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Frankovitch, May 11, 2015.

    This is part me being frustrated about my own writing right now, and part wanting to genuinely know... Once you have the idea that you want to work with and you sit down at your computer, what pace do you write at? I find that even once I have the idea, I still write very slowly compared to other things I write. Such as this post, or e-mails for work, or what have you. I've only gotten back to writing recently, I suppose that might figure into it. Is this just the way it is for most people, or is it just me?
     
  2. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    Pace? As in words a day or what? Beats per hour?
    I write in a moderate speed, somewhere between 500 and 3000 words a day, depending on energy levels, time at hand, my ability to focus (some days I'm more likely to procrastinate than others) and the amount of knowing what I'm supposed to write. Some scenes almost write themselves, because I see them so clearly in my head, while other take longer, usually the ones I only have a vague idea about.
     
  3. Frankovitch
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    Frankovitch Member

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    Words an hour, I suppose. One thing is that I have trouble finding the time and energy to write, what with a full-time job and two kids, but even when I do sit down, I consider it a very slow process. Part of it is willpower, and the constant distractions of facebook, but the one I'm annoyed with right now is where I set and try to figure out exactly how to phrase that next part...
     
  4. Masked Mole
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    Masked Mole Contributing Member

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    Frankovitch,
    It's easy to get caught up in other peoples' standards, but you really have to do whatever works personally. As previously mentioned, you are a parent with a job. That means you can't be held to the same standards as a lot of other people. Sure, Stephen King churns out novels like it's nothing, but that's his job. Just try to find a balance between disciplining yourself, yet not worrying too much.
    Also, figuring out phrasing is pretty important. If you puzzle over it, that's okay. I do that frequently, and I'm always happy when I give it good attention.
     
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  5. m.j.kane
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    m.j.kane Member

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    Sometimes 3000 words per hour, but that's only when I'm on fire
    I'd say I average 2000 per hour
    And usually always get at least 1500

    If anyone slower feels bad reading those numbers then they should take solace in that I'm a painfully slow editor.
    So any speed I have for a first draft it evens out in my remaining drafts.

    I've recently changed my approach though to writing with beats and thinking about what I'm writing as I do it more, and its slowed my writing down to 1000ph but the writing has a much stronger character voice and I'm enjoying it more. Also I've found my revisions are far less extensive.
     
  6. Komposten
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    Komposten Insanitary pile of rotten fruit Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I usually write at a pace of 300-500 words per session. And a session can vary between 30 minutes up to 2+ hours.
     
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  7. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    When I was working on my manuscript my goal was 500 words a day, or 2500 a week. If I couldn't meet one goal, I strived for the other. You see a lot of people just burning their keyboards with 3,000 to 5,000 a day, but you also usually see them burn out after a couple of weeks. After that they might not write for a week or a month. My goal was to chug through and keep from burning out.
     
  8. animenagai
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    animenagai Member

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    That's closer to my pace. Well, sometimes it's 300 words, other times it's more like 1500. Depends on the session, I edit as I write though. Eh, just do what works for you, Mr. OP. If you can only churn out 100 words a day, well, just do that for a start. Comparisons aren't always helpful.
     
  9. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I write about 1000 words an hour.

    At just one hour per day, that becomes about 4 novels a year. So if you write just 250 words a day, that would be a novel a year, which is a pretty good output for someone with a job and kids and whatever.
     
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  10. animenagai
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    animenagai Member

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    Does this include editing and so on?
     
  11. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    For me?

    I edit as I go, included in that one hour, but then large scale editing at the end of a project is extra time. Maybe 40 hours extra per book? I probably spend about 15 hours a week, on average, on writing, editing, corresponding with editors/agent, etc. Probably an extra one-time 10-15 hours of promo stuff whenever a new title comes out.

    I bet I waste as much time puttering around on Facebook and writers' boards (!) as I do actually writing.
     
  12. jodie_nye9663
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    jodie_nye9663 Member

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    I've never really paid much attention to how much I write.
    I focus more on discipline and tend to write most days. If not writing, then planning.

    I am a full time student and also have children.
    When I write reports ECT... I can easily bash out 3000-5000 in a day, but creative writing takes me much longer. varying on my mood or how noisy the house is.

    For example, today I wrote around 900 words and that took and hour or two, and that's a good day. Otherwise it's more like 300-400.

    But unless you have a set deadline or target finish date, I don't see why it matters. There's no rush. Writings about the enjoyment and entertainment factor for me.
    Unless your aiming to force/train yourself to pick up your pace, then good for you. Personally I don't think I could ever learn to be faster. Rome wasn't built in a day and all that jazz.
     
  13. VirtuallyRealistic
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    VirtuallyRealistic Active Member

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    When the muse hits me I can push out 1,000-2,000 words an hour, but when it doesn't I'll struggle to reach 750.
     
  14. Vrisnem
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    Vrisnem Member

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    I stopped keeping track some time ago. I found I was letting numbers get in the way of whether or not I felt good about the project.

    I know I can write at a speed of 1,000 words per 20 minutes, and can keep up that pace for a while if I have a solid outline, but I haven't felt like working that aggressively at a story in a long while.
     
  15. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    NaNoWriMo philosophy is that 1,667 words per day = 50,000 words by the end of the month. I improved that to 1,000 words for 20 days plus 3,000 words for the 10 days at weekends = 50,000 words.

    6 months later, I'm just approaching the 600 word mark...

    And, yes, I find it a lot easier to write non-creatively, like now. It's like exam-writing mode, in a subject that you know.
     
  16. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    On average, 1k in an hour. I write an hour a day(sometimes more on weekends). This means after 3 months the first draft is done. For me, most of the magic happens during the editing process, so I want to get the story out in rough form as quickly as possible. It also allows me to write more naturally, and with a "looser hand," so that I don't feel locked into any particular section once I begin the second draft.
     
  17. Vellidragon
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    Vellidragon Member

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    I never really aim for any specific pace, it really depends on how much I'm feeling up to when I sit down to write something up. When I'm feeling uninspired, I'm uninspired and forcing myself to try and write much isn't going to result in anything good (it's quality over quantity for me and I have no deadlines to meet). Sometimes, I just write a sentence or two and then stop, particularly if I can already tell I can't "get into it" at the time or if something is distracting me. It takes me a long time to finish a story, but this isn't really something I can do as routine work because the inspiration needs to be there. I tend to write things in a relatively finalised form when I do write them, though (not that I don't end up editing the book like twenty times anyway because I want it to be perfect). My first book was written over the course of five years, though that includes pauses and rewriting older bits many times.
     
  18. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    My pace would be considered.... slow.

    In fifteen years I've written two novels and four feature length screenplays. Zats it. My Current WIP, ignoring the literally hundreds of thousands of words I put in then cut out, would work out to be 21.87 words per day. That's the same amount as I put in bold in this paragraph.

    As for my hourly rate, it depends massively on what I am writing and how much I know what I want. I can type quickly so that helps when I'm on a roll. My thinking, however, is careful, and I often go back and refine and edit every sentence immediately, as I do with posts here. So my creative writing, and even work communications, are typed quickly, but thought out slowly, and edited methodically.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2015
  19. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I write at a painful pace. Be it fast or slow, it's painful. Then it clicks and I write furiously. Then it's painful again. And so it goes.
     
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  20. Viridian
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    Viridian Contributing Member Supporter

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    Wouldn't have a clue. I'm the same as you, full time job and two kids. I have a half hour for lunch at work and try to scribble as much as I can in my notebook during that time. Then I try to find the energy of an evening when all is quiet to put the manic scribblings into something that's readable. Sometimes I'm just too tired, sometimes I'm up till midnight. Yesterday I took out my notebook and the writing just poured from me, today I managed one sentence and spent the rest of the time staring into space coming up with nothing at all! Very frustrating.
     
  21. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    On average, I can push 200-300 words a day.
     
  22. UpstateWriter
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    UpstateWriter Member

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    I don't think I've ever had a fixed pace. There are days I can write 200 words. Days I can write 1200 words. I usually try to sit down with my coffee in the morning and try to get started with whatever thoughts are fresh in my head. Sometimes I'll get a writing session done in one sitting. Other times I will write a little, feel stumped, go do some yard work, then try to sit down again at the keyboard. I often wish I had the discipline to sit and be productive for eight contiguous hours, but that's not me.
     
  23. karmazon
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    karmazon Member

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    During the first draft I write as fast as my brain thinks and my fingers move which comes out to about 1000 words/15 minutes.
     

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