I had to go look up what the heck my actual goals were this round.
I intended to finish Couch to 5k. Well I sort of did this. I stopped the formal program after week 6 and just moved to doing my own walk/run intervals. I still have some walking in there, but as of yesterday, I was under 12 minutes a mile for 3 miles, so I’m calling this one MET.
I intended to finish the short story for the Magical Mayhem anthology. Did this. Magical Mayhem releases October 1st, so that’s coming up really soon. My short story, Whisper of Shadow, is a YA tale set in my Mirus universe.
I intended to finish DOTH (which I then anticipated would be about 50k words from where I was at the start of the round). Well this didn’t happen, in part because a) I didn’t write 50k words, b) the book is winding up considerably longer than I anticipated, and c) I FINALLY got it through my thick skull that writing absolutely every day is a wholly unrealistic prospect.
So what DID I do? I wrote 31,903 words on 47 days out of 80 (July was a really rough month for me), which works out to an average of 678 words a day on those days. I’m okay with that output given the circumstances. That’s up from Round 2′s output of 26077 words in 40 writing days, which works out to 652 words average on those days. And nearly back to Round 1′s output of 41188 on 49 writing days out of 80, with an average output of 841 per day. I have hope that Round 4 will get me more writing days, period, and higher outputs. Right now, I’m sitting at 109497 words for the year on 149 writing days (because, of course, I continue to write during our breaks between rounds). I am 68386 words into DOTH (with over 23k dumped into my scratchpad of scenes that didn’t work or got rewritten or whatever–not reusable for future books in the trilogy–I’m trying not to cringe at that).
I also plotted the crap out of several things. I logged 28 plotting days. A contemporary romance series idea. A YA post-apocalyptic trilogy. Another Seekrit Project I can’t tell you about but that existing fans are gonna LOVE.
The thing that I changed in terms of my personal goals that seems to be really working for me is to shoot for writing 20 days out of 30. I’ve been able to maintain that for the last two months, and that’s a goal I’ll move forward with through the rest of the year. Depending on how Round 4 goes, perhaps I’ll try to add a few more days to that in 2013, but for now, 20 out of 30 is good.
I’ve gotten into semi-regular sprint dates with a couple of other writer friends and that always helps boost my productivity.
The biggest thing, I think, is that the EPIC PROJECT FROM HELL at the Evil Day Job is finally winding down. Boss has accepted it’s a cluster f— and we’re on damage control. There’s still stuff to do but the end is in sight, and I can’t WAIT. Not having that hanging over my head like a vulture every day has helped so much with my being able to actually keep my head in a story.
Onward and upward toward ROUND 4!