Setting goals

With a full-time job and family, it can be hard to make sure writing is given its time, especially if you’re not a “working” writer, i.e. getting paid, with deadlines. So, for me, setting goals can help keep you going and see your progress.

Yesterday, I decided I wanted to finish my new novel by the end of October. No particular reason why. The date just stuck out in my head, maybe because I’d love to try National Novel Writing Month in November and see if I can write 50,000 words in one month — which I think is going to be an impossibility for someone like me with a day-job and family, but who knows.

Anyway, to get to 50,000 words by the end of October, I have to write … 354 words a day. Ok, for some reason, I did a rough calculation of this yesterday and came up with about 1,600 words, starting with 45,000 words still needed (I already had 5,000) divided by four month of four weeks each. Just now I did the calculation properly with the exact number of days (127, including yesterday, as I started yesterday) and came up with 354. My in-my-head math must have been way off yesterday. Ah! The 1,600 was probably the number needed for a week! This is why I’m a writer and not a mathematician.

Anyhoo, so I need to write 354 words a day. That’s way more doable than 1,600. 🙂 Yesterday I wrote about 1,500 in about three hours and I was thinking there’s no way I was going to be able to do 1,600 on work days. But 354 is much more doable.

So, I’m going to write a blog post every day, and at the beginning, I’ll keep a running tally of where I am in the word count.

If you’d like to tally yours too, join me in the comments. It’ll help us all keep going and inspiring each other.

Today’s start: 6,191

End: 6,794

Total for the day: 603

Still needed: 43,206/345 a day

Write On!


3 Responses

  1. Casey says:

    I cannot function without my writing goals. That’s why I have the weekly word count on my blog, a monthly goal review, and a set of goals for the whole year! I’m a bit goal obsessed.

    I’m right there with you though. My goal is to have my rewrite/revisions done by Sept and into the hands of beta readers so I can tweak it in October. I’m hoping to have it ready for querying by Nov so I can use NaNoWriMo to jump start my next project (not to mention stay distracted.

    Here’s hoping!

  2. Karen says:

    Yes, writing with a full time job is HARD. I’m doing a challenge right now of trying to write 500 words a day. Like Casey, I’m trying to finish up this current project by Sept. so I can revise.

    I’ll definitely check in with you. I need all the inspiration I can get!

    Good luck!

  3. Hey Casey, Yeah, I see the WIP Status on your blog. Great idea! And good job on the blogroll redo. It looks good. Thanks for including Day By Day Writer.

    Good luck to both of you, Casey and Karen. You’ve inspired me to revise my goal and try to be done by the end of September too. I think I can definitely do 345 words a day. So, I’m going to up it to 460 a day, which will give me 50,000 by the end of September. That word count shouldn’t be a problem either.

    I like how you guys think.

    Here’s to us and finishing by September! Whoohoo!

What do you think?