Let’s try that again

I made my goal yesterday, but fast it wasn’t. :)

First goal today: 1,557 words as fast as I can.

I don’t write ugly drafts so if you’re thinking I’m going to run off and start sprinting out thousands of words in short order, this is probably your first visit here. :D

Anyway, will update progress today because it seems to be working for me as a motivational tool at the moment. :)


1:17 pm: ended a session at 38 minutes, wrote 291 words.

2:53 pm: ended two sessions that totaled 25 minutes, wrote 184 words.

Spider in my front door stole my attention for nearly two hours. I am phobic and the spider was RIGHT THERE, dropping down in front of me. And it was huge. The web stuck to the bottom of the broom I was trying to use to knock it down, and I screamed loud enough to make my neighbors’ dog bark.

Yes, my throat is sore now, my stomach is still upset, and I’m definitely feeling my skin crawl every time I even look at my front door.

I need to get back to writing but I haven’t calmed down much at all. I’ve been watching Irma video at weather.com and checking out the National Hurricane Center’s Irma page. I’m in the part of Tennessee that could be affected if it takes the track they’re predicting now. The last tropical storm I remember being a big deal for me was Hurricane Opal back in 1995. This one looks like it could be something I’ll want to worry about. For anyone in its path that might read this: good luck and stay safe. It’s a monster.

How fast can I reach 1,557 words today?

My first goal for today is 1,557 words (which is my normal daily goal). Let’s see how fast I can reach it.

Fast? Maybe not. But…


10:51 am: 13 minutes, 87 words.

11:35 am: 30 minutes, 214 words.

12:25 pm: 29 minutes, 175 words.

2:34 pm: 7 minutes, 78 words.

3:28 pm: 11 minutes, 127 words.

Too many interruptions today, but that should be behind me now. Let’s see if I can stay focused on writing the rest of the day.

Total so far is 1.5 hours exactly and 681 words written.

5:30 pm: 44 minutes, 351 words.

8:22 pm: 44 minutes, 320 words.

9:04 pm: 13 minutes, 180 words.

I’m running out of steam! Total so far is 1,532 words. I’m so close to my daily minimum that I have to finish it. But somehow it’s become 11:22 pm and I haven’t gotten back to my writing yet. And I can’t quit yawning.

12:22 am: 22 minutes, 115 words.

Final tally: 1,647 words and 3.55 hours of writing.

It’s catch-up day redux! Goal: 6.7 hours of writing

Since I didn’t succeed yesterday in catching up, I’ve decided to give it one more go. Today I will try to accumulate 6.7 hours of writing. That’ll give me today’s three hours, plus catch me up with Saturday’s and Sunday’s three hours each.

Whew. I’m only doing this because I need some way to decide how much time to spend writing while I try to finish this book ASAP. My three hour daily goal isn’t likely to be enough unless I start writing five to six times faster than I’ve been writing. Catching up gives me a reason to write for longer. In other words, my brain likes to know the reasons for things, so I’m giving it a reason. ;)

I’ll report progress as I go the same way I did yesterday. I actually liked that format a lot. :)


2:53 pm: finished a 3 minute and 13 minute session, wrote 157 words.

Unknown: ended a 5 minute session to research some stuff from previous books in my series, wrote 1 word. Must’ve rewrote something, obviously. :)

Spent way too much time reading through my series doc to find stuff about one particular topic. And then the power went out. I kept reading. :D

5:49 pm: ended a power outage (it’s been a stormy day).

Internet wouldn’t work so I ended up getting distracted by troubleshooting the problem with my modem and router. Finally restarted my computer and problem fixed itself. UGH! Anyway, back to writing. :-|

8:03 pm: finished a 5 followed by a 16 minute session, wrote 99 words.

9:52 pm: ended a session of 32 minutes, wrote 275 words.

11:12 pm: ended a 54 minute session, wrote -12 words.

I keep fixing things that would be better left alone. UGH.

11:53 pm: stopped after a session of 18 minutes, wrote 263 words.

Gave up for the night in frustration. Scene was making me want to pull my hair out.

Final tally: 2.35 hours and 782 words. So far off the mark that I don’t even know what to say. Tomorrow I will write early and forget this late night crap. >:{

It’s catch-up day! Goal: 7.484 hours of writing

As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m trying to write for three hours today, catch up yesterday’s three hours, and finish Saturday’s three hours. That means I’m trying to accumulate 7.484 hours of timed writing today.


1:18 pm: finished a session of 61 minutes, wrote 135 words.

3:13 pm: ended a short session of 4 minutes, wrote 36 words.

5:31 pm: ended a 54 minute session, wrote 233 words.

6:54 pm: finished a session of 31 minutes, wrote 107 words.

Speed today is at OUCH levels.

12:13 am: finished another 61 minute session, wrote 157 words.

12:28 am: finished a session of 16 minutes, wrote 71 words.

Okay. I’m calling it.

I wrote for 3.783 hours and 739 words. A lot disappointed but maybe tomorrow will be better.


Why am I even writing these posts?

Saturday, I didn’t expect to get much writing done at all, because I had blocked off noon until 7 pm for a family event. Somehow I managed to get up Saturday morning and get started quickly, and I did two sessions for a total of 1.516 hours of timed writing making it to 814 words. After 7 I was too tired to even look at my computer. :o

Sunday, I expected to get a lot of writing done, but I totally flaked out and didn’t do any. Nada. It was a weird day, tbh. I spent too much time in a reflective, depressed mood and I didn’t like it. Not sure what happened there.

Today, I’m going to write today’s three hours, then yesterday’s three hours and then Saturday’s 1.484 remaining hours and see where it takes me. A 7.484 hour day is a huge challenge but strangely enough, I feel up to it today.

*I don’t have an answer for the question posed in the post title, so… no point discussing it.

Stop thinking so hard and just let the words come

Stop thinking so hard and just let the words come.” That’s the note I’ve written to myself in my notebook and those are the first words I saw when I looked at it beside me in hopes of coming up with a title for this post. :)

I’ve spent some time writing today, although only a little, but I don’t know how much because I forgot to start the timer. The fact is, I needed to write a lot today but I let an assortment of interruptions throughout the day keep me away. Now it’s 9:05 PM and I really need to push myself to write for three hours before I go to bed. Any interruptions at all will keep me from reaching that goal, simply because I can’t really afford to go to sleep any later than 1 AM, and I’ll have to finish those three hours by 12:30 at the latest.

I’m going to have to try, but I don’t feel very hopeful. Sadly, that’s probably going to work against me.

On the other hand, I do have to try, so here I go before I waste too much time on this post. It’s now 9:07 PM, probably a record for me and a post! :D


I didn’t make it to three hours but I did end up with 1.95 which is kind of great, considering how I felt when I started. It only amounted to 322 words, but I made it completely through chapter 16 and started on chapter 17.

Everything takes longer than I think it will

Everything takes longer than I think it will. On the other hand, at least things are getting done. This morning, I had a somewhat harrowing interruption when I had to knock a spider out of the doorway to my deck. I couldn’t check on the kittens while it hung there. It was huge. I hate spiders so yes, it turned into an ordeal, but when I came back to writing, I had thoroughly woken myself up and I started in on my edits with vim and vigor.

I haven’t finished the chapter 15–16 edits, although I’m closer and I’m into chapter 16 now—about half way. My 10:30 deadline came and went, but I’m just happy to be making progress and feeling good about how it’s going. Writing has been fun today.

When I get to the end of what I’ve written, I already know I’ll be deleting the last page or so plus some notes at the end that will probably also amount to a page or so, meaning I expect to lose at a minimum 500–600 words when I get there. But I don’t care. Anything that makes it easier to keep going with this book is good. :)

If I haven’t mentioned it, I’ve been running my timer up instead of down lately, so that’s why all the uneven session lengths. It also helps me see how often something interrupts me, or I interrupt myself.

Sessions (in progress):

  • 19 minutes: 155 words
  • 8 minutes: 50 words
  • 29 minutes: 67 words
  • 41 minutes: 12 words

My word counts are kind of low but I’m finally to the part where I’m about to delete stuff. I think I’m going to have to delete fewer words than I thought to be honest, which is great. And then finally, finally, I can just let myself go and write, write, write! :D

  • 32 minutes: 2 words
  • 38 minutes: 241 words
  • 9 minutes: -302 words
  • 17 minutes: 77 words
  • 23 minutes: 34 words

Total: 3.6 hours of timed writing and 336 words.

8-10-17 Thursday

Getting lazy on titles today. :)

The plan is 3 hours and 1,557 words. I’m going to read for a few minutes and then get started. Somehow it’s already 12:58 pm and I have no idea how that happened.

Okay, I’ve procrastinated like nobody’s business today, so I’m going to have to nail this word count today in record time or it’s not going to get done. Needless to say (I’m saying it anyway), it needs to get done.

Holy crap.

Would you believe I’m still procrastinating? :o

All is not lost. I did actually work on my timeline for this book (it’s a mess) and brainstorm a bit. That counts, right? It did get me 138 words.

Sadly, they’re mostly just notes-to-self so I don’t forget some of the stuff I figured out and they’ll be deleted as soon as I don’t need them anymore.


54 minutes, 141 words.

Total words: 279.

Well, not great, but it’s something, right?

Will have to do better tomorrow.

Practicing longer session lengths today

Writing longer is a problem I need to tackle. So today I am writing in one hour blocks. Practice is the key to improvement, right? So practice I will!

Also, I might reach a higher wph with a shorter session but I have a real problem doing a great many sessions. At least with the one hour blocks, even if I just finish one, I’m almost guaranteed to have a few more words than I’ll get from fifteen minutes. ;)

On that note, though, I am planning to do three of them, for three hours of timed writing today, minimum. As long as I reach 519 wph, I’ll reach 1,557 words. I have stuff to do today that isn’t writing, so I also want to finish those three hours relatively early. Relative, because it’s already 11:20 and I’m just about to have breakfast.

Yes, I did stay up too late, and I don’t have any writing to show for it. Kind of sad, huh?


Well, I didn’t write. I started reading a book and it was good, and I just never got started writing. Then I had things to do and came home tired. I would have gone to bed early but the spider infestation made itself known again (another spider tried to crawl up my bed—the third one in four days!) and I started vacuuming ceilings at 10:30 and finished at about midnight. Really shouldn’t have procrastinated that the night before. :o After that I had to take a shower because I was ridiculously hot and sweaty. Got in bed at 1 a.m. All I can say is that if they’re using old webs to travel the skies, the spiders are going to have to build some new ones. Maybe I’ll get a few days of peace out of that. This is the problem with living in the middle of the woods on a mountain. Ortho can’t save you, unfortunately. Spiders are everywhere. I hate spiders.

Start trying to reach minimum by noon

The title is brought to you by my plan. :) Starting today (It’s only 9:05 a.m.!) I want to try to finish my minimum by noon each day. By finishing early, I’ll take a lot of the pressure off and be able to enjoy writing in the afternoons when I do it, read fiction and craft books, watch and work through design tutorials, and actually maybe get some of the stuff that I’ve had on the back burner done.

Writing is an important part of my life, but I really don’t want to let it become the be-all and end-all of what I do. I am a publisher too, and I do want to have and maintain hobbies that aren’t also writing (writing fan fiction is a hobby which I really miss some days, but it’s still writing).

On that note, I don’t want to spend all morning writing this post and then wondering why I didn’t have enough time to write 1,557 words before noon.

I’ll post once I reach 1,557 words with my end time and time to completion and all the other usual stats. :)

I’m estimating (pushing for) 623 wph and 2.5 hours of timed writing. :D

If you’re a writer, have a good day of writing! If you’re not, read something today and enjoy it. :)

Okay, okay, okay, enough of that

Thinking is not doing and doing is the only way to get words onto the page, so time to start writing.

Starting within the next five minutes, I’m going to write 1,557 words as fast as I possibly can and still have it be coherent. In fact, I’m practicing that kind of fast writing right here right now. I am trying not to stop and just let the words flow out of my brain as fast as my short little fingers can type them out.

We’ll see how well that translates to fiction here is just a few short minutes.

Time to go so I can make this happen. :D See you shortly. I think I’ll do 45 minute sessions. I have a scene in my head (that nap really helped!) and I need to get it out while it’s fresh.

Update #1

That’s didn’t work out the way I’d hoped. You know how your speed is your speed is your speed? I’ve got that going.

Last 13 days average WPH:

415 – Today’s, after one 45 minute session of writing

Update the end:

1,073 words and at midnight I just didn’t feel close enough to fudge it and keep going. This midnight cutoff is really helping me not go too far with staying up and sabotaging the next day’s writing, but I’m not doing a great job of seeing it as the limit it’s meant to be.

The sad part of this is that I spent nearly an hour with this story in the morning, bits and pieces floating in my head until I have what I think is a pretty good idea of what’s happening next (that doesn’t happen to me often) and I still bogged down in the writing.

I do think perfectionism is messing with my speed right now. I’m going to have to figure out how to get rid of it for at least a little while so I can get out of this slump!

And since I’m writing this a couple of days later, in fact, I can tell you I didn’t have any luck with it yesterday (the next day) either! I wrote 201 words. So two more days where I didn’t finish my minimum.

I really don’t want to do that again so morning writing is going to have to be a priority.

That’s funny

So far today I’ve written 664 words in 1.75 hours. That’s 379 words an hour. Considering I deleted a nice little chunk of words in my second session this afternoon, I’m not too disappointed.

Words left to write today = 893

Hours needed to write them @ 379 wph = 2.353539157

I’d like to do those words at 600 wph or better, because then I can move on to catching up a few days’ word counts where I didn’t reach my minimum. Of course, here it is 3:57 pm and I’m just now reaching 1.75 hours completed, so that could be a problem. Anyway, onward and upward one hopes. :D

Today’s title courtesy of the fact that I forgot to title the post and that was the first phrase that popped into my head.

Update: I finished off the day with 1,616 words and it took me 3.5 hours of timed writing to write them. Not great, but not my worst effort to be sure. :D

Revisiting yesterday’s plan—but not

I’m going to keep an open mind with today’s writing, because it’s possible I might want to try again for a record setting day, despite the fact that I have the AC guy coming to repair my unit. (Which is now working again, but which I just know will quit the moment I cancel him, so I’m just going to let him come and do maintenance on the thing. It seems to need it every year, and if anyone ever asked me, I’d say yes, my geothermal unit has save me a lot on my electric bill but most definitely not on my nerves or my home maintenance costs.)

The reason I say open mind is that I’m just not sure actually planning the thing isn’t partially to blame for me not writing yesterday.

I’ve found success with the 1,557 word daily minimum. Jumping right into higher word count challenges might be self-sabotaging behavior—or at the least, seriously counterproductive!

So today I will write my minimum and go from there. Once I do today’s minimum, I might finish off yesterday’s minimum. Once I do that, I might go back to the next day where I didn’t finish my minimum and do that one too. And if at the end of the day, that leads me to a record setting word count, I might celebrate.

Sounds like a good plan for the day to me.

Hmm. Anything else? Oh, yes.

I’ll be sticking with 15 minute sessions today so I can keep an eye on my speed. I’ll be trying to reach 250 words at least once today during those sessions. 250 is a big number for me, and I know I can hit it but I don’t do it often. So, yeah, it’s a challenge, but a tiny one. :D

Update: It’s down to the wire. I have 30 minutes to finish 440 words, unfortunately. Might be a problem because my last several sessions have been in the 200–300 wph range. I don’t even know why I’m taking time to write this except that I had a compulsion to do it. Anyway, getting back to it so I can get those 440 words asap.

Update two: I wrote until just a little later than midnight because I was so close that I couldn’t let my day end without reaching that 1,557 words. I did! I came in at 1,661 and 3.5 hours of timed writing. I just can’t believe how difficult I find it to accumulate those hours of writing time over the course of a day. This is something that’s bugged me for years. I just can’t figure it out.

Update three: Ha! You thought I forgot about the challenge, huh? I did. Sorry. The fact is I didn’t make it to 250 words in any of my sessions. My closest came in at 179, I think. (I deleted the log before I remembered I was supposed to be keeping up.)

Big plans for today

Okay, I haven’t taken the opportunity to push for a record day in a while, so I want to do that today. It’s a perfect day for it. The house is empty and I have no one here to distract me, only myself (who is, let’s be honest, the biggest problem), but I’m going to overcome that by turning off WIFI for at least a few hours.

My best word count for one day is 5,816. So today I’m going to take aim at 6,000 again and see if I can get there.

My plan is simple if tough, because I don’t focus well for long periods of time.

I’m going to do 45 minute sessions and I’m hoping for an average of 800 wph for each of them. I know! My average on this book hasn’t been anywhere near that, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t try. And I have done 800 wph plenty of times (just not many lately) so I know it’s not out of my range.

After 2 sessions, I’ll evaluate whether or not I’m going forward with this plan today. I’m not going to set myself up for a frustrating day of failure, so at that point I might scale it back if things look dire. I’ll know within a couple of sessions if I’m able to write fast enough today to make this possible.

Now, off for breakfast, so I can get started with this as soon as possible. I’ve somehow managed to spend all morning doing spreadsheet calculations and thought experiments. Time for some action!

Had a plan; how about this summary instead?

On Tuesday the 11th, I decided to set a daily minimum word count and start writing 1,557 words every day. I began following that rule on the 12th. Overall, this is one experiment that seems to be working out well.

Here are my word counts for the last 7 days, beginning with July 12.


That’s an 80% completion rate, which is pretty damn good in my book.

The reason for today’s title is this: today’s word count sits at 402 words and it’s 10:15 pm. I had a plan for today, but I didn’t follow through. I don’t have a good reason for that, but I’m sitting here thinking I might still have time to finish today’s minimum word count if I start now. In truth, this is probably a perfect example of the thinking I talked about in yesterday’s morning post.

But I really think I could possibly still make it. So of course I’m going to have to try now or I’ll regret it. And if I don’t, well, at least I can be somewhat certain I’ll end up with more words than I started with.

(And I ended with 688 words. Although I didn’t make it to my minimum before 12, I’m glad I tried.)

Doing 15 minute sessions back-to-back

Today’s plan is to do 15 minute sessions back-to-back and only take a break when I have to. Knowing me, I’ll probably have to much too often, but at least now that I’m writing in the dining room again, I seem to be able to get back to it pretty quickly when no one else is around (and no one else is around today). :D

I’m thinking 12 sessions would be a good number, since that’d put me at 3 hours, which is probably what I’ll need to get my 1,557 words today, because I’ve needed at least that long the last 4 days. So onward! I’ll update this post as I go. :D

I ended up with just over 1600 words for the day, although I can’t say exactly how many because I’m writing this update on my phone from my bed. :D I forgot to update last night and wanted to do it before I got busy with today’s writing. The exact number doesn’t matter anyway. It was another win and it feels fantastic. ;)

Maybe I can get into flow and stay there

The title was a note to myself from my notebook about trying 60 minute sessions (yesterday). :)

Session 1

I wrote 535 words, which means I’m on track to finish today’s minimum word count in less than 3 hours of timed writing. Yay! I have 1,022 words to go. :)

Session 2

I wrote 380 words, bringing my pace down to 458 words an hour. :(

Also, I am not loving these 60 minute sessions. I thought I’d give them another shot today, but I’m done. The next session will not be 60 minutes. They’re just not working for me and I don’t want to sabotage the rest of the night’s writing. (Because, yes, somehow it became 6:49 pm while I wasn’t looking.)

I have 642 words left to write and it’ll take an estimated 1.40 hours to do it.

Session 3

Despite saying otherwise, this session was 60 minutes long. I wrote even fewer words this time than last—only 313 words.

I moved to the living room and did them on the couch, and although it’s helping me relax more, it’s not helping my writing! I just can’t get comfortable today for writing. {ugghhhh}

A lot of my problem is caused by a side-effect of that home maintenance project I did on Monday and Tuesday. I am terribly allergic to mosquito bites. And I have what feels like a bazillion of them, courtesy of that stupid project. And the itching is driving me up the wall. Feels like I’ve been in contact with poison ivy! If I’d thought for a moment mosquitoes were going to be a problem I’d have hosed myself down in insect repellent but it never even occurred to me to worry about mosquitoes.

Anyway, better get busy with those last 329 words I need. It’s 10:29 and I’ve committed to ending my writing days at the stroke of midnight. I might sometimes keep writing, but anything after 12:00 pm sharp will not go into the previous day’s count.

If I want to reach my minimum for today, I only have 1.5 hours to do it.

Sessions 4–6

I finally abandoned the 60 minute sessions. These sessions were 20, 20, and 13 minutes long. I wrote 400 words exactly for a total of 1,628 words today.

Which, whew, because I really wanted to finish my minimum word count for the day. :D

Session totals

  1. 535
  2. 380
  3. 313
  4. 67
  5. 217
  6. 116

Sessions 1–3 were 60 minutes, and sessions 4–5 were 20 minutes, while session 6 was 13 minutes.

  • 1,628 total words
  • in 3.883 hours
  • for a pace of 419 words per hour

The hell if I know why that number of hours took me all day, but that’s pretty much how it is the majority of the time, so I guess I should quit being surprised by this.

See you back here tomorrow.

“What’s this?”

Today’s title is brought to you by my journal and is nothing more than a note to myself of a line of dialogue so I’ll remember to add in something important that I appear to have forgotten about in yesterday’s work. :D

Session 1

So today I’m trying longer sessions. I’m in a position here in the dining room that makes it more likely they’ll work for me. I’m doing 60 minutes at a time, and I’m a little disappointed at my first session results of 327 words.

The low count could have been because of the scene I’m working through, or it could be that I end up slowing down with longer sessions. I don’t know. I felt like my mind wasn’t wandering, and that the writing sped up and slowed down in normal patterns, so who knows what it was. I’m going to let it ride for the moment.

I have 1,230 words left to write, and my spreadsheet says I’ll have to write for 3.76 more hours to do it at my current pace. (327 words an hour isn’t very fast!)

Session 2

I wrote 462 words in 60 minutes, bringing my pace up to 395 words an hour. So I’m still seriously under-performing, but maybe it’s just because I’ve been away from writing for so long.

It’s also much later in the day at this point than I wanted it to be. However, my spreadsheet now says I need only 1.95 more hours of writing to reach 1,557 words today and I know I can do that.

In the 117 days prior to the restart of this book, I wrote only 2,115 words of fiction in total. That’s almost 4 months of nada. It makes sense that I need to get myself back up to speed.

Anyway, back to it. I have 768 words left to write and after a break I’m going to do my damnedest to write them all in the next session!

Session 3

Well, this sucks. I’m exhausted (and in pain) from the project I started during my break between sessions. I wrote 146 words in 33 minutes, realized it was after midnight, and decided to call it.

I would’ve had time to finish this if that project hadn’t taken 3 hours instead of the 30 minutes I estimated (moving furniture, a computer, etc). Then I had to help out one of my kids with something and listen to said kid talk for nearly an hour about stuff he really should have talked to me about when I was on a break.

What this session made me realize was that I need a cutoff time. Midnight seems perfectly appropriate, so tonight and in the future, if I haven’t finished my words by midnight, I haven’t finished my words for the day.

It’s better this way. Otherwise I’ll guilt myself into staying up super late trying to finish and the next day will suffer.

Anyway, I’m disappointed in myself for not finishing these words tonight. No more big projects as breaks when I’m writing.

  1. 327
  2. 462
  3. 146 (not a full session)
  • 935 words
  • in 2.44 hours
  • for a pace of 368 wph

Session two better than session one, so… incremental improvement?

Session two’s attempt has also failed.

I wrote 358 words (537 wph). I did improve over session one though, so there was some incremental improvement.

But—oh, and there is a but—not only did I not write faster than my average (600 wph), I wasted a bunch of writing time when a shiny video caught my eye on YouTube and I watched a bunch of videos about traveler’s notebooks (which I don’t even have nor do I want!). I haven’t been on YouTube before last night in months. So I have to ask myself: Why now? Am I really so desperate to avoid writing that I’ve turned to YouTube to sabotage myself?

Frankly, I’m a little off-kilter anyway because looking at my notebook, I see that I ended session one at 10:58, yet I didn’t end session two until 12:40. Where’d that extra hour go?

UGH. I have no idea!

My plan was to finish three sessions before lunch, but now I’m starving and it’s 2:32 so I’m going to go ahead and stop for a moment.

When I come back, I’m going to do sessions three to six.

And… this ended up being my last session. I just flaked out, no real explanation why I couldn’t bring myself to finish the day.

Didn’t get there in session one

Session one for the morning is over. I did not write as freely or constantly as wanted to. I hesitated a lot. I backspaced more than I’d hoped. I second-guessed myself many times.

I wrote 313 words (470 wph). That’s not even my average pace (600 wph), so I have to admit  session one’s attempt was a failure.

On to session two, after I stretch my legs.