I keep reading about writers writing about how fast they write.
Whew, that’s a mouthful.
And as much as I like the idea of writing fast, I’m afraid that my idea of fast is a paltry 1000-1500 words per day.
Based on my average ‘Butt-In-Chair” time per day, that’s about 250 words per hour.
In her guest blog posting today over at Magical Words (http://www.magicalwords.net/ ) Diana Pharaoh Francis just finished up 55,000 words in 12 days to meet a deadline. That’s more than 4000 words per day. I attended a panel at last year’s World Con where Jay Lake asserted that he writes 5-8K words per day. Author Rachel Aaron (http://thisblogisaploy.blogspot.com/2011/06/how-i-went-from-writing-2000-words-day.html ) claims she has improved her writing speed to 10K words per day! True, these pros are much further along on the path of writerly evolution than I, but their speed is astounding.
I have tried to write faster. I think
I do all the ‘right’ things:
· I track how many words I write per day
· I write nearly every day (that’s 27 to 28 days per month)
· I keep to a daily quota (which has gone from 400 words per day to my current, 1250+ per day)
· I maintain a beat sheet for helping me keep my overall story in mind
· I outline all my scenes using a scene template
There are days when I’ve written as many as 2800 words per day, but those days are the exception, rather than the rule. My average writing pace for the last two years has been 25k-35K words per month. I have managed to successfully complete 50K words for November NaNoWriMo challenge for the past two years, but both of those were first drafts. For me, a first draft doesn’t bear a lot of resemblance to a final draft.
The fact is, after 5 or 6 hours on the chair, my butt hurts. I stiffen up and I can’t sit any more. Rowan knows this, and my little four-footed redhead comes and lays her head on my lap if I’m still working at past 3pm. We go play a little Frisbee and go for a walk and I’m done for the day. I’ve tried to pick things up again after dinner, but unless the Muse is visiting, I just don’t have it in me until the next morning. I need that idle time to refill my mental hopper with words for the next day.
Maybe when I have deadlines, I’ll be able to write faster. Until then, I guess it’s all I can do to write until I feel the burn. The butt burn.