Friday, January 1, 2016

2015 Writing Stats

Happy New Year!

This is posted later than usual because I’m actually writing it today. I guess this is what happens when you binge-watch a television series. Two more episodes of Gotham to go and my life can go back to normal. Whatever normal is nowadays. J

I’m looking forward to getting back into Ghostly Interlude, which is a good feeling. Those characters are talking to me again. I just hope I don’t take forever to add meat to this project. So maybe I should set a goal. That’s what New Year’s is all about, right? Setting goals and trying to keep them? So here’s one (I’ll have to come up with more, but that’s for another time): Finish Ghostly Interlude by March 1. That’s two months. Two months with no holidays and no vacations. Now that I’ve put the goal in writing, let’s see how I do.

I’m fairly confident I will succeed. Why? Because despite all that stuff with my heart messing with my head, 2015 was a good writing year for me—word-count-wise, anyway. I keep track of my writing on an Excel spreadsheet (I do love Excel—guess there will always be an accountant in me!) and have been since 2011. If I had known when I started writing that it would be my life—that I would end up writing several novels—I would have started keeping track then. But we never know what will impact us until it does, right?

Anyway, on with the stats!

Words Written (these numbers are from first drafts):

  • 2011: 121,972
  • 2012: 84,797
  • 2013: 53,334
  • 2014: 60,653
  • 2015: 76,653

I’m still kind of amazed that my writing went down the year I lost my job (2012). Didn’t mean I wasn’t writing. Unfortunately, revising/editing doesn’t show the amount of time I spend on a project.

Words Adjusted (these numbers reflect revising/editing):

  • 2011: 8,388
  • 2012: 17,489
  • 2013: -7,929
  • 2014: 12,441
  • 2015: 4,479

2013 was a traumatic year for me—writing-wise. A negative number! I had to cut out pages of a project that was written before I kept track (so it doesn’t really reflect the words I had written the year before). It also shows why I didn’t write as much fresh stuff—too busy editing. I have thought about keeping track of my time, but that would feel like way too much work and even though writing is my job, I like the fact it doesn’t FEEL like a job. You know?

I could list how many days I spent on each project—the information is there—but that’s too much work for me to do now (maybe later, when I get stuck on a project—it’s certainly doable).
Blog (yep, I even keep track of what I write on this blog):

  • 2011: 31,816
  • 2012: 50,897
  • 2013: 64,929
  • 2014: 60,131
  • 2015: 65,906

Some of these numbers are kind of skewed, since it also includes the blurbs for those books I’ve read. Still, it shows that I’ve stuck with this blog no matter what. Kind of impressed myself there!

First Draft Projects:

  • 2011: Finished Book 3 in March. Started Book 4 in April
  • 2012: Finished Book 4 in January. Started Book 5 in April. Finished Book 5 in October.
  • 2013: Started Book 6 in April
  • 2014: Finished Book 6 in February. Started Book 7 in March.
  • 2015: Finished Book 7 in August. Started Novella in August. Finished Novella in December.

I do know, based on this data, that when I’ve got projects to edit, I don’t do much first draft writing. 2013 showed me that. Now, 2013 was a very GOOD year. That was the year I got my first publishing contract. It just wasn’t a good year for first draft writing (same with 2014). Somehow I’m going to have to figure out a way to do both, especially if I want to get books finished SOONER.

Let’s see if I can get Ghostly Interlude ready by March 1. Because I do love starting new projects in April (Books 1, 4, 5, & 6 did).

So… How was your New Year’s Eve? Had a wonderful dinner at our friend’s and then sat around and watched Michigan State get blown away. Bugger. I had hoped differently. I don’t really care for the two teams remaining, so I doubt I watch the championship game. Today at 1pm is OSU and Notre Dame. Go Bucks!

Have a great Friday!



JeffO said...

I tend to keep track when I'm editing of what the word/page count is each day I work on it. It's fun to watch how a manuscript will expand and contract as you go.

New Year's Eve was fine, but then yesterday afternoon I watched my Bruins get hosed in the Winter Classic, so that wasn't much fun. Happy New Year!

Stephanie Faris said...

That's a good idea--we should all keep track of the words we write and look back on our accomplishment at the end of the year!

Stacy McKitrick said...

Jeff - I'm always impressed when I see just how many words I add when I'm adding meat to my story. I don't worry if my first draft is way under count now. And I saw how well Boston did yesterday. I was watching OSU beat up Notre Dame, though. Yay!!

Stephanie - I love comparing years. Writing, reading, it's all fun!

Jennette Marie Powell said...

I'm behind on my blog reading... but better late than not at all, right? You had a great, productive year! Isn't it wonderful to see how it all adds up?

My New Year's Eve was nice--had a couple of friends over for a great dinner, nice, simple and low-key as I was still somewhat recovering from the crud (better now). Let's hear it for an even better 2016!

Stacy McKitrick said...

Jennette - I do love to see how it all adds up. I hope it adds up to even MORE words this year!