“Progress on what?” you, ask. This page tracks my progress in my career as a professional fiction writer. I use that phrase purposefully, because I don’t like writing nonfiction, and I don’t really want to write anything except fiction. I’d rather earn my living writing, but only fiction, and if not fiction, then I’d rather earn my living doing something else.


2012 = 146,821 words (partial year, July – December)
2013 = 268,191 words
2014 = 217,641 words
2015 = 250,011 words
2016 = 220,071 words
2017 = 126,581 words
2018 = 92,198 words
2019 = 239,736 words
2020 = 35,649 words
2021 = 34,134 words
2022 = 8,767 words
2023 = 58,442 words
2024 to date = 18,694 words (At this pace, I’ll write 62,599 words this year. However, Jan & Feb were particularly slow, so I expect more. The goal is for a LOT more.)

I track only publishable words, not for any particular reason, but because that’s how my spreadsheets are easiest to maintain—I simply copy in my ending word count from whatever doc(s) I’m working on.

Therefore, deleted words or discarded stories get subtracted from my totals immediately. So, yeah, I could have 100,000 today but only 50,000 tomorrow. Sometimes chopping words off a story is the only way to move forward.


2012 = 2 short novels; 1 novelette; 2 short stories
2013 = 4 novels; 3 novelettes
2014 = 3 novels; 2 novelettes
2015 = 4 novels; 2 novelettes
2016 = 3 novels; 2 novelettes
2017 = 2 novels
2018 = 1 novel
2019 = 1 novel; 2 novelettes; 2 short novels
2020 = nothing
2021 = 1 novelette; 1 serial story; 1 short story
2022 = nothing
2023 = 1 novel; 5 short stories
2024 to date = 3 short stories

These are based on the word count scale below. I have to admit, one of those short novels from 2012 is really short. :) Also, one of the 2012 short stories is a one-off under a pseudonym that might never see another published story.

I’m working on recovering my income after the dramatic dive in output from 2020–2023. I wrote about the reasons for that at length, so you can go looking if you care to know. I’ll just say that I finally feel like things are progressing again, so keep an eye on the numbers for 2024 if you want to know how it’s going.


Novels > 40,000 words
Short novels > 20,000 to 40,000 words
Novelettes/Novellas > 7,000 to 20,000 words
Short stories < 7,000 words

I write everything under pen names, and although I think it’s fun sharing some details, I don’t share my pen names.

Things I’d like to do in 2024

#1 Write more

I had a dramatic dive in output for a while, related to a lot of things happening in my life, but I seem to be recovering. My current plan involves writing every day and a daily streak of > 200 words a day. Getting started is the hard part, and this gets me started.

My dream accomplishment for 2024?

Write several books for every series, some short stories, and a few stand-alone novels.

#2 Focus on novels and short stories for my ongoing series

I tried my hand at serial writing to try to get my writing moving forward again when I was having a particularly hard time getting back to it. It was a fun experiment, but I’d rather put more effort into my novel series and related fiction. My income is better when I release novels and stories related to my novel series.

#3 Publish a book every 6–8 weeks

I’m trying to build new momentum with my series, and more frequent releases will help that effort enormously.

#4 Stop agonizing over every word I put down

Learn how to let it go. Learn how to enter flow faster and easier. Learn how to stay in the story longer.

This one ends up staying on my list every year because I know if I can accomplish it, all the other goals I have will be so much easier to reach.

Now, on to the work! Books don’t write themselves—or maybe in these days of AI, they do, but my books don’t. :-)

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