Sometimes you just want to sit back and play Candy Crush…and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Returning to work after two weeks away, I came back to a lot. A lot of emails. A lot of instant messages. A lot of conference calls. Plus, I don’t have an official boss right now and the other two team leads (I’m also a team lead) were on vacation. So everything for the team came to one person. Yup. That was me. Needless to say, it was a little overwhelming. Pile on top it was my birthday and we celebreated a few times, and I didn’t get much of anything done last week.
I’m still very much relaxed and ready to jump back into it. Just doing my best to get my brain back in gear. I’ve got a lot I need to get done. I had hoped to be on track to finishing Almost-Super Heroes 2 before the end of this month. Being that I’m about 40,000 words away from the end, that’s most likely not going to happen. Sorry to disappoint you on that front.
I will be kicking things into gear in July and I’ve set forth a couple of challenges for August and September. I thought May was a challenge? Let’s see what the next two challenges bring. 🙂
First some sad news. I’ll be attending a funeral for a friend. That news hit me rather hard last week as well. He died the day before Father’s day and a few days before his 58th birthday. His birthday is the day after mine and we had celebrated several together. We had grown apart over the years and he’ll be missed.
In other fun news, I’ll be buying a bass. My best friend from high school will be turning 50 next year. We were in a band together in high school with another friend who lives in Long Beach (and is the lead singer in Electric Funeral, a Black Sabbath cover band in LA). The three of us will reunite on stage in February. We’re currently discussing the songs we’ll be playing. I’m really excited to be picking up a bass after…a lot of years. I’ve been thinking of getting one just to noodle around with. Now I have a reason to get one. If I can track down old recordings of us from back in the day, I’ll post them. Our band was S.C.R.O.G. Inc. and we were a bunch of nuts with little-to-no talent. We’ll have to see what shows up.
I’ll also see if I can track down the band my friend and I were in back in the day after I’d gotten out of the Navy and switched from drums (I’d gotten better since high school) to bass. We were Defective and had tons of fun playing in clubs all over San Diego. I’ll have to see if we can convince our old lead singer to come down and join us on stage for a song. That’d be a hoot.
Back to writing. Since I didn’t actually put my hands on the keyboard to create a story, I though up an entirely new series I want to write. This one would be over the top steampunk with a floating city.
But Jay, that’s been done before.
No, it’s a floating castle.
But Jay, that’s been done before.
No, like the entire country is on an airship. I know many of these ideas have been done before, but I think I have a different take on it. I’ve got the setting and characters all fleshed out. I just need to come up with a storyline. For that one, I might just start typing and see where it goes. Man-o-man do I have a lot more books that I want to write now.
Speaking of books, I read a lot. Like, a lot. I try to read a book a week. I haven’t reviewed much because I have so many Facebook Friends who’d I’d like to review their books, but Amazon likes to erase them, so I stopped. I was thinking of teaming up with another person who’s first name it J. and we might start the J & J Book Review podcast. We’ll have to see how that fleshes out. I’ll keep you posted when we start doing that.
Next week I hope to have Golden West 3 released. At least the ebook. The print edition will probably come the following week. I still need to do some editing and redo all the covers. I have some ideas and ran them by my favorite daughter who likes the idea of doing some book covers for me. She’s busy filling out scholaship forms and getting ready to transfer to Newschool of Design and Architecture in the fall. So she’s also a little busy. Again, I’ll keep you posted.
There’s a lot that’s going to happen this year. There are many more stories to come. I know I need to write and this week, I’ll be getting back at that.
Until Next Time
Didja miss me?
So I spent the month of May writing a LOT of words. Writing 90,000 words in a month, working my day job, spending time with friends and family, seeing movies, packing for a 2 week vacation out of the country. May was CRAZY busy.
And exciting at the same time.
So where have I been for the past two weeks? Recharging. It’s been a hectic first half of the year. Not just from the writing perspective, but from a work side as well. I’ve been burning both ends of the candle. The downtime was needed. It was also well planned, my my wife and her sisters.
We spent two weeks in Costa Rica. A day in San Jose, two days at the foot of the most recently active volcano, two days in tree houses, a day at the top of a mountain, and four days at the beach. We saw hummingbirds, butterflies, so many birds, sloths, iguanas, lots of ants, alligators, raccoons, and lots of monkeys. Anywhere we went, animals were everywhere (as were the bugs). It rained daily (Costa Rica is a rain forest after all). We hiked many many miles (kilometers even) and every minute was time well spent.
It was one of those, I can’t believe this is my life moments. Eleven of us went, my family, 3 of my wife’s sisters and their families. We traveled to a lot of different spots, ate great food, met wonderful people, and I couldn’t be happier with our trip.
I could honestly go on and on for days about all our adventures, I may in another post. Watching monkeys on the beach trying to steal people’s items was pretty funny. But I’d like to talk about the power of a writing streak.
When I got back, I thought I’d hit the ground running. Oh my was I so wrong. I wrote a little on Saturday, just shy of 1000 words. Sunday was Father’s Day. I’m writing this blog post, but I will write tonight. Most likely not 3000 words as I was doing in May, but I’ll get some words down. It’ll take me a bit to get back up to speed and once I get my feet under me again, I’ll start making big strides once again. It’s weird right now to think I was cranking out so many words and now I have an issue getting my brain to focus. As I said, it’ll take time to bring it back to that focus I had before, but it’ll happen.
One of the things that happened to my brain while on vacation, I got ideas for three new series. I keep trying to think of just how much I can write in a month so I can write all these books, lol. One title I’ll need to write under a pen name as the titles I write under J.R. Murdock are intended, for the most part, for all ages. These three new titles all would be shorter books (30,000-50,000 per book) and all of them would be a stand alone book in a series (think Doc Savage, The Hardy Boys, Conan, The Executioner, The Destroyer). I’m thinking of titles that I can crank out quickly and drop on a regular schedule.
Why, Jay, why?
Money. It’s really that simple. I love writing V&A Shipping, GRPC, and all those titles. I will still stick to my 5 year plan with dropping a book every other month, but with these new titles I could start writing these books and drop them without impacting my schedule. Especially if I can keep up my writing pace. That’s the biggest challenge I have. Keeping up the speed, the quality, and the schedule.
I have zero fan base. Please, don’t take that as a slight if you’ve been with me since day one. I know my numbers and I’ve sold a few books, but when I post on my blog, I see 5-10 hits on the post. When I drop a book, I see 5-10 sales and I’m lucky at this point to sell a book or two a month. That’s across all titles. I’m not a big name and I take full responsibility for that. I know I need to work on building my audience. To be honest, I’m starting from zero again and I need to do what many other authors have done. I need to get a loyal fan base of 1000 fans. That’s the challenge. I’ll post my journey, of course, and I’m so happy you’re here with me.
For now, vacation is over. It’s time to get some words down.
Until Next Time
Note: this path assumes that you know how to write a complete 50,000 word story, create a cover, and edit your own work. It also assumes that you know how to record audio. Furthermore it assumes that you know where to put your writing and audio once it’s complete. This is also not my personal path and I will post a follow-up to this post explaining my own path.
A recent conversation with a friend of mine led me to realize how many different paths there are to get a story into a reader’s hands. This one will focus on serialization and possibilities therein.
Warning: There may be math involved.
If you’re looking to write, but you worry it’ll take you too long to write that monster epic you’re looking to produce, here’s a little trick you can try using.
One of the best ways to get visibility is through consistency. If you put out content on a regular basis, week in and week out, you have a chance of getting noticed because people will follow those that continuously put out content. If you’re not putting out content on a regular schedule, this is when readers will forget about you and disappear. Trust me, I’ve discovered this the hard way.
If you only have one hour a day to commit to doing this, your path will be easier than you think. The biggest obstacle in your path will be staying on track and focusing every single day. It will require only seven hours of your time a week and will get you putting out content faster than you thought possible.
Step 1: Write 1000 words a day Monday-Friday.
This will give you an easy 5000 words a week. This sounds like a challenge. It is. I’m challenging you to week in and week out write 1000 words a day every weekday. Without fail. Don’t give me excuses about how tough life is. I never said this would be simple. You need to trust me. It’s not as difficult as you might think. Honest. You can do this!
Step 2: Edit and put a cover on your story.
Yes, you should learn how to do covers. If this is a serial, you’ll want to have a similar cover for all the weeks you’re writing the serial. In this step you’ll also want to assemble your front matter and get your ebook ready to publish in all the locations you want to publish. If you want to go wide, don’t go into Kindle Select. If you want to focus on Amazon only, go Kindle Select. This choice is really yours.
Yes, you’re into week one and you’ve already written a 5000 word start to your serial. Drop that out on Amazon for 99 cents. Ignore it! Don’t go checking your stats. Don’t even tell anyone. Trust me!
Step 3: Sunday – Record the audio of what you’ve written.
Yes, you wrote 5000 words. It’ll be short audio. It shouldn’t take you long to record and edit 5000 words. Put that audio up on your website. Make sure your hosting plan can support your audio and you don’t have to worry about. Again, don’t tell anyone what you’re doing. Allow this to happen organically. Make sure your blog post points to where they can buy the ebook version.
Step 4: Repeat steps 1-3 for 10 weeks.
Yes, that’s right. Remember how I said you’ll need to do this week in and week out? Yes, you need to do this weekly. Every week. We’re going for consistency here. So if you can’t commit to doing this on a regular schedule, don’t start. I’m not saying give up on writing. I’m saying that this method requires commitment. A lot of it.
At the ten week point, you should have written 50,000 words, give or take. Assemble all your files into one book and drop that book. Make sure in the description of your book, you note that this is a collection of the first serial. You don’t want to upset readers that have found you along the way. The cover should either be the same or similar. For 10 weeks you’ve put out a 99 cent story of 5000 words all leading up to the end of your serial. Now you’ve got a completed book. Put that out for at least $4.99. This is a great discount for those that chose to wait, but if they want to follow along weekly, they’ll pay a slight premium.
Take all your audio, split it into chapters, and drop that onto Audible as a complete audio book. Price what you feel appropriate.
Now it’s 10 weeks later and you’ve got a total of 12 (10 serialized stories, 1 full ebook, and 1 audio book) items up for sale. How’d that feel? Weird? It should. You’ve come further than many will ever get and it only took you 7 hours a week to do it.
Some options you can mix in here.
Only publish every other week. Still write, edit, record, but release the ebook at 10,000 words. This gives the reader a little more. Then you’d be putting out 5 10,000 word serials every other week, and at the end of 10 weeks, one 50,000 word novel. That’s still respectable. Very respectable.
Want to do it even more aggressively because you have more time to commit and/or you write faster? Fine. Do 2000 words a day each weekday. Then you’re putting out a 10,000 word serial every week, an audio production, and every 5 weeks, a new book.
Why 50,000? If you’re doing a serial, you’ll need to be compact and pushing the action. This will be something that at the end of each serial you’ll need a cliffhanger to pull the reader back in to pick up again next week. Most pulp novels from the 30s, 40s, and 50s were 30,000-50,000 words long. That’s what you’re doing with this process. You’re becoming a serialized pulp writer. It doesn’t matter what genre you choose. Romance, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Thriller, Mystery. Any will work with this method.
You MUST remain consistent to be successful. Look at the podcasters that made it to get their publishing contracts. They were publishing audio weekly, week in, week out. Without fail. If you’re not pushing out content on a regular basis, you will see things drop off.
This isn’t a trick. I’m not trying to pull a fast one on you. This is the new world of publishing and anything is possible. Even if you don’t have a rig to record with, there shouldn’t be anything stopping you from opening up your word processor and writing 1000 words a day 5 days a week. An hour on Saturday to edit and cover, and wow, look at you go! This is possible. Very possible. I don’t know anyone personally doing this, but it wouldn’t surprise me if there are many.
If you made it the full 10 weeks dropping every week (or every other week, or 5 weeks if you went for 2000 words a day), this is your time to shout to the world what you’ve done. You should be excited. Now is the time to check your numbers. Remember, I said don’t check them. Why? Numbers disappoint people. If you’re out there every day looking at numbers, you’ll get depressed and stop. You don’t want to lose momentum.
The biggest trick, writing the next 50,000 words. Yes, you need to keep this going. Celebrate, but continue to put out the content. Don’t let it slip and fall behind schedule. That’s how you’ll lose readers. If you can keep it up, you’ll put out 5 books in a year (take two weeks off at some point) and you’ll have written 250,000 words (or 500,000 and 10 books if you go for 2000 words). That doesn’t sound like a lot, but if you’re sticking to this schedule, it’ll add up so quickly. Don’t be too aggressive until you know what you’re capable of.
If you can stick to this schedule for a full year producing serials, ebooks, and audio, I would recommend starting up a pateron. This is another revenue stream and I won’t go into it here. Do your own research. Just know that consistency is key to all of this working. Stay on track and you can do it.
Do I guarantee this will work? Simply, no. I don’t know you. Your situation. Your writing ability. If you try this and it doesn’t work out for you, look at what you’ve accomplished no matter how long you try. Seriously. Are you further along in your writing than you were when you started? How many books did you complete? Did you follow all the steps as closely as possible?
If you do try this, let me know how it goes. I’d love to follow along. I want to cheer your successes. If you have questions, ask. I’d love to do all I can to help. Honestly. I’d love to see this work for someone. Give it a try. You’ve got almost nothing to lose. If you have fun doing it, then all the better.
I’m off to go make words happen
Until Next Time!
So far for this month, I’ve written 63,190 words.
I…no, seriously. I’m astonished. I was a touch behind, but now…I’m a tiny bit ahead. I’ll be doing my words in a little bit. I don’t want to lose that tiny bit. I’d like to stay on target.
Never did I think I’d maintain this pace for half the month. Now with ten writing days left, it looks like I might actually make it. Another 30,000 words and I’ll do it. I’m not sure what to say. I guess we’ll see where I land.
As I said from the start of this challenge, I’d be happy to hit half my goal. That would have been 44,000 words. I’m already past that so I’m excited! Like… very excited! Currently, I’m 100,000 words ahead of my annual goal. I think I’m going to leave that goal of 438,000 for 2017 in the dust. In fact, I’m already looking at 2018. I’ll be bumping up that goal to 2000 words a day and see where that takes me. It’s very likely I’ll come close to that goal this year, but we’ll wait and find out. I’ve a couple more challenge months I’ve set aside, so we’ll see where that takes all this.
I’m also thrilled that I’m knee-deep into Almost-Super Heroes 2. I’m so excited that I decided to do a little timelining on when these books will drop. As I said in the last post, I’m looking at a 1 year, 5 year, and 10 year plan. As it stands, here’s what I’ll be dropping for the rest of the year.
July 1st, 2017 – Golden West 3: Showdown
September 1st, 2017 – Giant Robot Planetary Competition 2: Villain
November 1st, 2017 – Almost-Super Heroes 1: Escape
Yes, I’ve already plotted out 2018 releases as well. All of this will lead up to the Military Sci-Fi trilogy I have planned with the 4th book in V&A Shipping, GRPC, and Almost-Super Heroes all tying in.
In total this entire story arc will take place across 15 books. Yes, a massive undertaking. That’s a lot of books. A lot of teams. A lot of moving parts. To be honest, at this stage in my writing, I’m finally ready to take it all on. I can’t wait to start dropping books over the next two years to see what happens.
All of this wouldn’t be possible if I hadn’t challenged myself to see what was actually possible. I’ve had a few of you following along and thank you for your encouragement. It means a lot to me. I’ve cleared away many roadblocks and mental challenges that I’ve had. Those prevented me from really allowing myself to move forward with this.
I’ve got a lot of words to write and I’m going out tonight (Yes, I still have a life beyond writing) so I’m off to make words happen.
Until Next Time!
My kid has a thing. My family had a thing. I need to be somewhere else. I’m tired. It was a long day and I just want to relax. I’ve got so much else to do. My favorite show it on! I’ll just watch the news for a little bit.
The list can go on forever. I get it. I honestly do. There are a billion excuses that can be made for not writing. The biggest being “I need to do my job.” Ok, that’s not en excuse. You need to do your day job to pay the bills. It can’t be your excuse for doing nothing.
I have a day job. I watch TV with my wife. I do things for my favorite daughter. I spend time with family, friends, go see movies, etc. I’m doing all that.
I’m also writing 3000 words a day. On average! If you recall last week, I put up a bit of a buffer. This week I had some other things going on and didn’t write 3000 words a day every day. Here are the numbers.
Yes, that’s only 2566 words per day. I needed to be out of town on Friday and Sunday was Mother’s day. Saturday I was plain wiped out and took a 4 hour long nap.
I had excuses. I still wrote each day. I wanted to hit my numbers, but life prevented me. I still found time though. So, I lost my buffer. I was a day and a half ahead of schedule. Now, I’m dead on. This week isn’t about getting caught up or trying to get ahead. No. It’s about staying on track. It’s about making sure excuses don’t get in my way. It’s about setting my priorities and moving forward.
For the month I’m sitting on 42,127 words. Honestly? I’m still shocked I’m hitting the numbers I’m hitting. I set this goal and like all my other goals, I’d be happy hitting half my target. To think that I’m on track to hit my goal, I’m stunned.
I’m also having a great time. I’m getting stories done I’ve been waiting to get done. I cleared away all my excuses. I communicated my goals with my family. They’re helping me and pushing me. Motivating me. I have friends both IRL and online giving me encouragement. It’s empowering. it’s a driving factor and helping me put up the numbers you’re seeing.
I’ve not only broken through a writing block that’s plagued me for years, I’ve also overcome the misconceptions of I need to write slow to write well. I blew past the myth that I could only write X number of books a month. From what I can tell, at this point, is there is no true upper limit other than the ones I put on myself.
I took 53 days to write GRPC2. I took 32 days to write Golden West 3. Sure, one was 97,000 words and the other 80,000 words, but guess what, they’re both done. Yes, last week I finished Golden West 3. That trilogy is done. Finished. I most likely won’t go back into that world of revisit those characters. I have a different direction for my writing now and I need a lot of books done to start on that target.
Yes, I still have a master plan. Do you want to know what it is? Here is goes.
Golden West 3 will come out later this year. Probably July. I need to record book 2 and book 3 for audio. Book 1 is already recorded. Then I’ll look at releasing GRPC2. I need to record books 1 and 2 so it’ll most likely be September before I drop that book. Then I want to release Almost-Super Heroes 1 in November. I need to record that one as well. I’m currently writing ASH2 and should have it done before the end of June (vacations need to happen). After that I’ll be writing GRPC3 and ASH3 as well as V&A Shipping 3. If I can keep up my writing pace, I’ll have those done before the end of the year and start dropping them in January, March, May. That will complete what will be leading into a Military Sci Fi trilogy. There will also be ASH4, GRPC4, and V&A4. That will be a total of 12 sci books before the end of 2018.
That’s when I’ll reassess where I’m at. If I release that many scifi books in 2 years and I get little or no traction, I’ll be flipping to Fantasy for two years. That’s when I’ll jump into Of Gnomes and Dwarves and write the 10 books I intend for that series. I’ll also write a few books in the Astel series. That will be nearly 2 years of fantasy.
After that, I have a fun idea for another series, plus I can work on books in the Supernatural Learning series. I could easily spend a year writing 10 books in each of those series (I’m planning on those being 30,000-40,000 words long each, so much shorter books.
Now, that’s a five year plan, subject to change and depending on the level of success for any of those. If my Sci Fi takes off, Fantasy will take a back seat. My goal is to make money at this endeavor, so if I’m making money and having fun writing the stories, why would I stop? If I’m not hitting the numbers I want to hit, I have SO many other stories I can write.
After 5 years, I’ll assess where I’m at. I’ll keep writing, but if after 5 years, I’m not getting any traction, I’ll most likely write for another 5 years and then reassess again. If I write at this level for 10 years and I’m still not making money at it, I most likely won’t be having any fun with it either at that point.
So let’s review the 5 year plan. Shall we?
I’ll be writing 10 Sci Fi books to have a total of 12 across 4 different series. I’ll be writing 10-15 fantasy books. I’ll be writing 20 paranormal fantasy. I’ll write somewhere between 40-50 books in 5 years of varying length across different genres. So you think that’ll make an impact? I honestly have no idea what will happen. I’ll hope for the best, but honestly have no expectation that this will be anything more than me writing a lot of books.
So you’re reading all that right. it sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? Not if you look at the pace I’m writing. it’s actually less than I’m capable of. And it’s all subject to change at any given time. It’s subject to life happening. It’s subject to a large number of factors all which may be out of my control at any give time.
My hope for the coming months it to average 60,000 words a month. I know I can do more and get ahead of schedule, but mostly I want to set an achievable goal and have shorter term targets like I’m doing to try and push myself from time to time. I don’t want anxiety to creep in and I give up.
There it is. It’s out there. My 5 year plan. go back up and reread that Derek Jeter quote. I saw it on a friend’s feed and had to share. There are a lot of writers out there that are better than I am. Faster. More popular. More successful. I’m not measuring my success on theirs. Don’t measure your success on mine. Work as hard as you can toward your own goals. Set your targets. push yourself. if you know you’re not putting in the time you know you could be, push harder. If you’re not working as hard as you can on your own goals, there’s only one person that can change that.
I’m off to get my 3000 words in. It’s late, it was a rough day. I watched too much news. Now it’s time to put those excuses away and write.
Until Next Time.
Two weeks ago I set out to write 3000 words per day until May. How’d I do? Well, if you’re following along at home, you know I didn’t succeed the first week. How’d I fare the second week? Worse. Dang nab it.
The first week I knocked out 17,118 words. The second week I only managed 15,205. So my hope was to hit 42,000 words over 14 days and I only managed 32,323. I hang my head in shame and disgrace.
Pfft, who am I kidding? 32,000 words in two weeks? I’ll take that. Sure, I missed my goal, but I also spent a lot of time with the family doing family stuff and sometimes, that happens. Yes, I still wrote every day, but when you don’t get a chance to start writing until very late at night, makes it tough to get those 3,000 words out.
As far as I’m concerned, 3K Per Day ‘Til May was a rousing success. For the entire month of April, I managed 66,321 words for an average of 2211 words per day. I finished Almost-Super Heroes (title subject to change cuz I had a brilliant idea) and I got knee deep into Golden West 3: Showdown (sitting at nearly 43,000 words). It was an exciting month and I’m looking forward to May.
One of the things I learned in the 3K challenge is that I really needed to stretch to hit that word count on a daily basis. Out of the 14 days, I hit that target 8 days. Yes, I missed the target 6 of those days, and most of the time it was all my fault. I’m the king of procrastination. I know this and it’s something I need to work on. The news won’t change from hour to hour, therefore I don’t need to watch 3-4 hours of news while I’m doing things about the house. In fact, I shouldn’t because it eats into your brain. It caused me to lose focus. Other days work did the eating and I didn’t want to look at a computer screen for one more minute. So I didn’t. Until late. Then I chose to sit up trying to hit my target.
With all that said, yes, I feel my 3K per day challenge was a huge success. I got a lot of words done. I stretched my limits. Spread my wings. And, though I didn’t fall out of the nest, I didn’t soar as high as I’d hoped.
So what’s next? I’m glad you asked.
Next is my next challenge and you might have guessed, it’s very similar to the challenge that just passed. 3K per day ’til May was a warm-up to the main event. That’s right. 3K Per Day in May! I will attempt to write 3000 words a day for an entire month.
What? Has Jay lost his mind? Is he nuts? A job, A family, and writing 3000 words a day? Where does he find the time?
For me, it’s about small sacrifices. Taking advantage of those little slices of time to write and to write as quickly as possible during that time. I’ve got a lot of books in my head demanding to be let out, so it’s time to turn the crank and get them out.
Speaking of which, I’m off to go make words happen. If you need some motivation, follow along with me! I’d love to see how you’re doing. Set your own challenge and post here. Let me cheer you on. It doesn’t have to be writing related, could be art related (a sketch a day in May), could be poetry, painting, basket weaving, anything. Let me know, post it here, and go for it! Let’s push each other to do more.
Until Next Time!
Last week I publically said, I’ll try to write 3K per day ’til May. You may be asking yourself, how’d it go?
That’s right. I missed! Badly! Not even close. Well, okay. That last one is a lie. Here’s the breakdown by day:
For a grand total os 17,118 words over 7 days. Just under 4,000 words from the goal. So, a miss. I started out from behind right out of the gate, did well one day, missed again, hit a three-day streak, then I had to work most of the day on Sunday and didn’t feel like sitting in front of a computer, but did anyway.
Is it really failure? If you’re looking purely at word count per day, yes. If you’re looking at it as the average for the week, yes, I missed. Regardless, my whole point is to TRY and write 3K per day average over the next two weeks. There’s still a chance I may catch up, but I’m not going to fight and struggle. I’ll take a 17,000-word week every week if I could.
I’ve still got a week to go, and I learned a lot about myself over the past seven days. I learned that I can write very quickly as most days I didn’t start writing until after 8pm. I also found out that I love to procrastinate.
I still spent time with my family. My wife and I had a great date day on Saturday since I knew I’d be working all day on Sunday. I learned that sitting in front of a computer for 12 hours is tiring (well, I knew that already), but I learned that even if I’m mentally exhausted, I can still bang out words. I’m excited to see what I’ll learn this week about my writing process.
So what’s with the 1,000,000 words of crap?
I posted a few years ago that I’d hit that number. I haven’t written another million. What that number represents if the number of words I’ve written in novels. My previous count included every short story I’d ever written, a rough estimate of words that came that would never see the light of day, and stories that will never be published, self or otherwise.
So this million is only the count in books I’ve written. I’m proud of that number. It tells me where I came from and where I’ve gotten to. I still have all those other words stored somewhere. For example, there are 4 Of Gnomes and Dwarves books, multiple drafts, some hand written, that I’m not counting in that million. Those words are only books that will see the light of day, or are currently in the process of being written or edited.
When I crossed that number this week, I had a little smile. I’m proud of that accomplishment. If I can keep pace with my writing over the next year, I may hit 2,000,000 faster than I hit the 1,000,000 mark. Like, next year faster. We’ll see how it goes.
I’m off to get my start on week two of my 3K per day ’til May challenge. If you’re enjoying my blog posts, or if you just want a free ebook of mine, consider signing up for my newsletter. I share different information there and may modify the format soon. I’d love to have you be part of what happens over there. You can click here.
That’s all for this week.
Until Next Time…
Hey, Howdy, Hey, Gang! I hope everything is well in your world. Mine? Crazy, Hectic, Fun! So much going on and I’m having a great time!
Let me start with a breakdown of how I finished out my Lent goal. If you recall, my plan was to try to average 2750 words per day (Pulp Speed 1) until the end of Lent. Well. I failed. There’s no easy way to put it, I dropped the ball. Had I stayed on pace, I should have written 63,250 words during those 23 days. Instead, I only managed 56,112. Horrible.I know. I hang my head in shame. I only managed 2440 words per day on average.
Oh, who am I kidding? As I keep saying over and over. Set your goals higher than you can reach so it forces you to stretch and fight and claw your way toward that goal. I do NOT look at what I did as a failure. Not even close. I failed better than many succeed. That’s why I pushed myself. I know I could have hit the word goal had I not done one thing in the middle of all that.
What happened, Jay?
So glad you asked.
I jumped from one series into another. If I’d jumped into GRPC3, V&A3, or ever Almost-Super Heroes 2, I probably would have maintained that speed or done even better. Instead, I jumped into a world I haven’t been in for 3 years. That meant I needed to re-read two full novels, make notes, and still try to tap out a few words a day while I did that. Not an excuse, just a reality of what happened. It also took me a few more days to get them back into my head so I could start pounding out words.
Where am I at with that story?
Golden West 3: Showdown, will be the final book in the Golden West trilogy. That’s why I wanted to complete it. I’ve gotten nearly 12,500 words done in the story thus far. I’m excited. I’m ready to rip through this book and git it done. I’ve had these scenes planned out in my head since I typed the first words of the first book. I know how the entire trilogy would end. How the final few scenes would play out. Just like all the other books I want to do this year, I’m crazy excited to write this one.
That said, now that I’m ready to go on a tear, why not give myself a bigger challenge? I mean, come on, why not? I set a HUGE goal for Lent, and I crushed it! That means I’m capable of more, right?
Oh, yeah, Lent goal. I should probably give you the final numbers on that, eh?
This year, Lent was 46 days long. I wanted to write, on average, 2000 words per day or a grand total of 92,000 words. What I wound up doing was averaging 2250 words per day for a total of 103,495 words. So I set, met, and surpassed my original goal. Was it set too low? I don’t think so. I was coming into this year with a nearly two-year hiatus of not writing much at all. By “not much” I mean maybe 10,000 words per year for two years. That’s awful.
I set the goal at something I thought I might be able to obtain. I never thought I’d fly past it. I honestly didn’t.
So, back to where I was before. I need a new goal. A new challenge to get me through to the end of April. Something that might be beyond my grasp, but unless I try, I’ll never know. From today, April 17, 2017, until May 1st, 2017 I plan to write (on average) 3000 words per day. 3K a Day Until May! I’m back into a groove with this book. I’m excited to hit some of the upcoming scenes, why not? Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Right?
What does that mean for word totals? If I hit my target of 3000 words a day, I’ll write 42,000 words over the next 14 days. That’s nuts! That’s crazy! I must be off my rocker! No, being off my rocker would be trying to hit triple my daily word count which I’ve set at 1,200 words per day this year. 3,600 words a day? That sounds very difficult. So let’s stick with 3K per Day Until May. That also has a better ring to it.
Again, this is all words of new fiction. It won’t be blog posts or emails or anything like that. It’s ONLY new words in a fiction world. Be that Golden West 3, or Jack Kane 2 (If I can nudge Mr. Plested along, wink wink). Who knows what’ll happen. I surely don’t! But it sounds like fun to try. Ready to watch me fail in spectacular fashion? Here we go!
Until Next Time,