Deadlines and Word Counts

Being an Indie author pretty much means that there are no deadlines, except the ones I create for myself. I have no schedule to follow so when I’m done, I’m done! Writing under a contract, however, means others set the deadlines and not meeting them could result in a voided contract (and giving back my advance.)

I don’t think that’s a bad thing, however, just different for me. I can’t procrastinate nor let too many things crowd my time; things like the mounds of figs and tomatoes which need to be frozen or canned. I have to make sure that I set aside the time to write.

Word count is a new thought in my head as well. Again, not a bad thing, because it sets parameters for the book. with my “when I’m done, I’m done” mindset, however, I never gave them a thought. Now I’m curious as to how easy it will be to hit the mark. Once I finish my first draft, will I be trying to figure out what to cut? Or will I be looking for examples to add? We’ll see!

August is a busy month on the homestead, with the garden peaking and a number of fruits needing to be picked and processed. Once I get most of that behind me I’ll have a little breathing room. The words are flowing well, however, and I’m highly motivated. Both good things for any writer.

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4 Responses to Deadlines and Word Counts

  1. Garrett says:

    The writing I do for work doesn’t have word counts, but it does have fairly rigid deadlines. The closest I’ve had for word counts was the 11 years I did nanowrimo.org. I may pick that up again sometime, but taking last year off really showed me that I needed a break! 🙂

    Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

    • Leigh says:

      Isn’t nanowrimo something like 50,000 words in 30 days? That seems like a lot of writing! I’m to write 40,000 to 50,000 by the end of the year (hopefully, as I do have an extension in place if I need it.) I had to submit an outline and a 4,000 word sample within a month after signing the contract and so far so good. Feedback from the publisher was positive with helpful comments. I need to figure out a word per day schedule and use that as a goal to keep me on track.

      • Garrett says:

        Yeah, 1667 a day, but then you’re shooting for volume, not quality. The idea is to fix the quality later. Many of us like to edit as we go, which slows things down, but it’s a habit I just cannot break.

        A daily word goal is great. Lots of people like to have a routine — set aside the same hours each day to write. I know that helps me.

        • Leigh says:

          If I just divide the total number of words by so many days it doesn’t seem to bad. But being nonfiction, it’s the research that is the real time gobbler! I recently did try dabbling with some fiction and thought it a lot of fun to just write without having to look up facts.

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