Hopefully you are at home with family and friends either recovering from an early afternoon feast or about to dig in. How’s that conversation with Uncle Ned going? How many glasses deep are you into the cranberry prosecco? (It’s available at my local Trader Joes’s, and it’s delicious.) Has everyone fallen asleep watching the game?
If you at least answered “yes” to the last one, then this post is for you. Now is the time to write. Everything I read says to be a better writer you must write (and read, but who has time for both?). I can’t recall the number of times I’ve read I should write every day. There’s even recommendations on how to write every day.
I would like to write every day, but if I want to do anything else, that is not realistic. For example, this month, for NaNoWriMo, I committed to writing every day. So far I’ve succeeded but at a cost. I’ve pretty much given up my morning work out. I try to squeeze that in at lunch but am not always successful. I also usually don’t get enough sleep because I’m trying to get things done in the evening in order to wake and just write.
I’ve done the majority of my writing in the hour before my kids wake up. I usually complete about 400-500 words a day. It’s slow going but progress nonetheless. The problem is it’s progress at the expense of my health. While not working out and sleeping is fine for some, it’s not for me. Once NaNoWriMo is done, I plan to return to my usual routine.
So where does that leave me–going back to doing at least one writing related activity a night. Some nights that will be actual writing. Some nights that will be submitting stories to markets. Some nights it will be researching new markets for story submissions. Other nights it will be learning about the craft of writing. Oh and some nights I might read, as crazy as that sounds.
Current, the NaNoWriMo website says at my current pace I’ll complete 50,000 words by the first week of February. However, my goal is 80,000 to have a fighting chance at a marketable book. When I started this month, I thought I would finish all 80,000 words by February. Now I’m thinking I’ll be lucky if I finish by Summer 2019.
If I go back to my old routine, I no longer know what a manageable goal is. 11,000 words a month? That’d mean another six months. This year I’ve averaged a little more than that over each quarter, so 11,000 words a month may be aggressive. Plus I’d still like to work on new short stories and continue to submit those I’ve completed to various markets (and submit them elsewhere as the rejections roll in).
I still have over a month to figure out my 2019 writing goals. That’s plenty of time, right?
Let me know in the comments if you successfully write every day and what you give up to do so.
Photo credit: tigerlily713 via Pixabay