This week, I am featuring a guest post by author Chelsea Falin.
Tips On Making Your Daily Word Count
Every author has a problem making their daily word count-whether it be once in a while, or an every day thing. This is a huge problem for me. It’s not the creativity part of things, but the whole ‘finding the time’ side that really gets me. See, I’m not just an indie author, I’m also a professional freelance writer who works between 20 and 40 hours per week from home. I also take care of a husband, three year old daughter, disabled step father, two guinea pigs, a turtle, and fish tank. I cook, clean, run errands, and try to somehow fit a bit in seeing other family and friends. Where on earth do I find the time to write in the middle of ll of that? Truth be told, it takes lot of sacrifice, and a bit of finagling, but I’ve managed to figure out some things that work well for me. I manage to come out with two to four books each year, ranging from 20,000 words to 80,000 a piece.
The first thing you need to do is figure out what works for you. There are plenty of opportunities to snag a bit of writing day throughout the day. Even if you can only take fifteen minutes here and there to write a couple of words, it can really add up! Here are some times of day when you can try to get in a few words towards your daily goal:
1. Wake Up Early. I know, I know. I’m not really a morning person either, but like I said, it takes some sacrifice. Even if you only get up half an hour earlier than usual, you have found yourself half an hour of writing time. That could be as few as one hundred words or as many as 500 words. It just depends how those creative juices are flowing.
2. Nap Time For The Little Ones. If you’re a stay at home/work at home mom or dad, you can snag a little bit of time for writing when your little ones are napping. I know that this is the time when you like to clean, get things ready for supper, etc. But try to take half of whatever time your little one is sleeping and write.
3. Break Time/Lunch Time. If you work, you can use your break or lunch time to write. Jot down a few sentences while you’re eating. Even if you can only squeeze in, say, 20 words somewhere into that time, it adds up! 20 words a day, five days a week, is 100 words a week. In a single year, you could have used that time for 5,200 words or more!
4. Stay Up Late. Personally, this is when I get the most work done. My daughter’s bedtime is 9:30. I usually don’t fall into bed until midnight or one A.M. I know that not all people are night owls like I am, but even snagging an extra hour before bed can help a TON.
So that’s when you can catch some writing time, but here are a few tips to help you out:
* Set a reasonable goal. I know some authors who only have a goal to write 200 words, but personally, my goal is to write 1,500. It just depends how much time you can manage, and how much sleep you’re willing to sacrifice.
* Don’t get frustrated. If you miss your word count once in a while, It’s not the end of the world. Move on and make sure you make it the next time.
* Don’t be afraid to take breaks. If you want to take a week off between books, go for it. Every once in a while, your brain needs a ‘refresh.’
* Don’t let writer’s block get you down. Find out what helps you to break it. For me, I start another story and within a day or two, I’m ready to get back to my original story.
I hope these tips help you to make your writing goals! Do you have any other tips? Have you tried any of my tips out and want to share how well they worked for you? Let us know in the comments below! We can’t wait to hear what you have to say!