I’m practicing writing more. By the new year, I want to get my week’s word count up to 16,800 and keep it there. It’s going to be hard to do with the holidays in the way, but I think it’s possible. I’ll probably have a few really good days and a few very low days, but it will all add up.

This is all because I’ve dumped using averages to tell me anything about my writing.

I took a hard look at all my numbers a while back and realized that the data I’ve collected is nothing but a series of outliers. Meaning averages don’t tell me anything useful about myself or my writing habits other than that sometimes I write a lot and sometimes I hardly write at all.

The thing that will be more useful to me than averages is a quota.

I had thought about sticking with a daily quota but it leaves more room for failure. It’s easy to miss a day here and there.

But if I use a weekly quota, it’s still short-term enough to keep me focused (I think, evidence still to be accumulated) but not as dependent on me having a good day every single day. (2,400 words a day every single day is a big ask for me. But some days with bigger word counts and some days with smaller word counts is more realistic.)

On the surface, this really isn’t any different than pushing for a daily average word count of something or other, but underneath, there’s a different mindset at play when trying to hit a weekly word count target versus trying to maintain a certainly daily word count.

Getting stuff out the door before Christmas and a new year’s goal

Finished my story. Now on to publishing, writing an episode for the serial I’m doing on Kindle Vella, and finally getting back to editing those novel chapters. Trying to do it all today. Time will be short because of a family obligation but I’m going to try.

I wrote over 2,400 words yesterday. I will have to look at my spreadsheet and see when the last time is that I made it over 2,000.

I haven’t mentioned it yet, but I’m trying to get my 7 day total up to 16,800 before the new year and keep it there. That’s a 2,400 words a day average, although I’m not talking in averages anymore since they really don’t fit my writing/work style.

Working on a short story today

I’m trying to finish a short story today, set in the world of one of my longer series. It’s taking a little more effort than usual because I had to ditch two different plot threads I started to go with because I had a faulty memory of the dynamic between two characters. :D

I’ve had to read bits from three different books and I keep going back to them for little tidbits so the story doesn’t try to rewrite history. I paused my attempts to write 1,200 words an hour, because I just don’t think this is the right project.

And also because I don’t think I want to track my time spent writing for a while. So there’s that, too.

But I’m having fun with it, so I’m going to get back to it now. I’m really hoping today will be the last day on it. It’s a holiday story and I want to get it out asap.

1,200 words an hour—Attempt #2

Even though I didn’t reach 1,200 words an hour yesterday, I did finish one of the things I needed to finish writing. \o/

Today, I need to finish a different thing, and do some editing of a lot of chapters. Typo hunting, continuity, clarity, that kind of thing. I’ll be doing my best not to be tempted to change anything else, because that way lies madness. :-)


Not even close.

I think, and this is me being proactive here, I’m going to pause this particular challenge and come back to it when I’m working on a different project. This one is a little tricky because I have to stop and look up information a little more often than usual (from books in the series that I wrote quite a while back).

1,200 words an hour—Attempt #1

I didn’t finish what I wanted to finish yesterday (or the day before) so I’m building some accountability into today with a short challenge.

1,000 words an hour is usually a stretch for me. I’m not a really fast typist. I only come in around 60 words per minute when I’m pushing myself. Sure, that’s 3,600 words per hour typing speed, so it’s not that slow, but that is not writing time. I write much, much slower than I type.

So a 1,200 word an hour challenge is just the thing to try to push me past my internal critic and get some real writing done. Even if I fail, the push to write faster will probably help get past critical me. :-)

See you later for an update. :D (To this post.)

Final results—

I never made it to 1,200 WPH today. My best session was 441 WPH.

I’ll be trying this again, probably tomorrow. I have some reading / typo hunting to finish first, but if I make it through that, I’ll be writing again.

A Windows 11 upgrade

I resisted moving from Windows 7 until earlier this year. I finally had no choice because I bought a new laptop and it came with Windows 10.

I got used to it, as best as I could. I won’t say I liked it, but I didn’t hate it, so there was that.

But recently, my machine had been telling me it was ready for an update to Windows 11. I decided I would probably do it when I had time, because if I was going to have to live with 10, I might as well live with 11 instead.

A few days ago, I finally did. I’m glad I upgraded from Windows 10 to Windows 11. I like it better than 10, even though it’s not perfect.

There have been a few surprising little features that I like very much, like the ability to compare images when you select and open them together. Or how neat and tidy the “start” window is now. (I did have to re-pin everything there, but my pinned documents in the taskbar for some of my favorite programs stayed put.)

The recent updates to the Microsoft Office programs make more sense now. The look fits well with Windows 11.

The colors are dull (as they were in Windows 10 to some extent). There’s too much sand and tan and gray. The rounded edges are too soft and boring. Google’s redesign (and return) to rounded edges is much prettier, but WordPress’s dull colors and new editor look is no better. In other words, I’ve seen plenty of this style of design, so it hasn’t taken me long to get used to it.

Overall, upgrading Windows was a happy upgrade, for a change.