On the topic of speed

I read a lot. I think I’ve mentioned that. :)

I use feedly to keep up with blogs and magazines that interest me, and Pocket to keep articles for later reading, and I still do a lot of reading in my web browser on my phone and at the computer, too. I don’t do much of this reading on my tablets, but that’s because if I have a tablet in hand, I’m usually either reading a book, or I’m proofreading one of my own books. :D

A newer follow for me is The Daily Journal. Like Dean Wesley Smith, Harvey (The Daily Journal’s writer) is an advocate of the “writing should be fun and don’t let the critical voice get in your way” philosophy of writing, one I happen to follow myself.

If you can, take the time to read The Daily Journal. It’s full of interesting tidbits of writing knowledge, distilled into small daily topics.

I don’t always agree with everything he says, but that’s mostly by degrees.

In one of his recent entries, he mentions speed (a topic I have written at length about here on the site in one post or another), bringing up the 1,000 words an hour thing.

(Who started the myth that to be a pro you need to write 1,000 words an hour or consider yourself inadequate? I’m going to have to go looking for that one day, just to see if I can figure it out.)

I happen to wish I wrote at 1,000 words an hour with any kind of consistency at all but, alas, I do not. My brain just isn’t wired that way, and I’ve only finally come to that conclusion in the last year or three, after trying for many, many years to write faster.

Have I mentioned that I’ve been writing fiction since I was a teenager (pre-teen, even) and that I was a teenager when Quantum Leap was a first run show? Yeah, it’s been a while. :D

Anyway, I feel like I do have enough lifetime experience to know myself in this, and I am sad to say that 1,000 words an hour is a blazing fast speed to me, and I reach it only in the most intense writing sessions. Some writers are blessed to be able to get their thoughts in order and get them down in a coherent fashion at speed. I am apparently not one of those writers.

I make do.

I don’t get to write for 1–3 hours a day and call it done—it’s certainly more like 8-10 for me if I can keep myself sitting still for that long. But I’m okay with that. I enjoy what I do, and I have fun with my characters and I don’t spend much time anymore comparing myself to other people.

The number one thing that gets in the heads of most writers is that tendency to compare themselves to other writers.

Don’t do it. Really. You aren’t likely to find anything good at the end of that rainbow. :)

And if you don’t write at the blazing fast speed of 1,000 words an hour, but you enjoy your writing, and you aren’t slowing down because you think you need to fix things and are cycling back through your text excessively, then really, really don’t let the myth of the 1,000 words an hour writer get in your head.

That’s all. :D

Now, I’m going to go write my book. I’ll probably get a few short bursts in that reach 1,000 words an hour, but by the end of the day, I’ll probably be in the 500 words an hour range, as usual. :)

But I’m going to get lost in my story, and I’m going to have fun anyway.