The results of my experiment

How did it feel when I dropped 20,000+ words onto my spreadsheet?

Okay, first, why only 20,000 on a book that ended up being almost 70,000 words long? I had already counted 48,000 words towards the book on my spreadsheet. Granted, I deleted off nearly 10,000, but that was one of the reasons for starting to do the count this way — so I would only count “finished’ words. So, the count listed on my spreadsheet was to the end was just over 20,000.

It was cool to see myself hit like 200% of my extreme goal. But my critical voice was quick to remind me that I’d only see that once and then it would be bye-bye until I finished another book.

But then, when I looked at my year-to-date word count, it seemed like only a drop in the bucket compared to what I’d already done. It didn’t move the dial at all.

Now, I have written every day for over 600 days. Some days, that has only been my blog. Previously, it actually had to beat a daily word goal. This is a streak that gets me excited. Seeing me beat my extreme goal gets me excited.

Maybe if I’d been able to add 70,000 words to my spreadsheet all at once, that would have been exciting, but I really don’t know. See, I went from approximately 210,000 year-to-date words to 230,000 words last night. It just wasn’t a big jump. I’m not sure that seeing 280,000 words up there would have gotten me gung-ho about doing my counts this way. If I’d seen something like 290,000 to 310,000, then maybe, but I’m still not sure it would.

At the end of the day, I really think I like seeing the slow, daily build. I like hitting that weekly goal and getting a streak going there. I like seeing if I can hit an extreme goal which pushes me. That seems to motivate me to write more too. Page goals, even though I have them set as weekly, don’t seem to be something I can hit and I can’t find myself motivated to care. It’s strange because there’s very little difference between page goals and word counts really.

So, while this experiment was helpful in helping me determine that I like the daily goals, I’m going to have figure out how to do this, such as when I have to back track because the story took a bad turn. I think this is going to take a bit to figure out and I might have to go back and read some of my old blog posts since that was me thinking out loud about this subject.

Other than that, I’ve spent all on my feet. I harvested a lot of squash and broccoli from the garden. I made broccoli soup for lunch, then I made stuffed zucchini for dinner. I feel like all I’ve done today is cook. Oh, and do laundry. See what an exciting life I have? (grin) I did get some writing done this morning in-between watering/harvesting the garden and making soup (a project which always takes me two hours since I have to cut up and wash the broccoli very carefully). But tomorrow I’m scheduled to go for biking and breakfast with the family and I’m already worn out. I think it’s time to go sit with my feet up and read for a bit. At least I should sleep very well tonight.