Writer-Talk Tuesday: Creating a Writing Calendar
We writers talk a lot about word count and goals and writing every day. But have you ever actually sat down and written down daily goals?
Let me back up a minute. Even on a contracted deadline, having an overall goal—and writing it down—is a good idea.
Friday, I sat down with my planner and set myself a goal of having the first draft of An Honest Heart finished on September 15—or, one month prior to the date it’s due to be turned in. Then, based on the current word count (5,995 words) and my word-count goal for the rough draft (85,000+ words), I determined that I would need to write 1,385 words a day to hit that total word-count goal by September 15.
So I went through my planner day by day and wrote down the word count I should be at for each day to meet that September 15 goal. I also made sure that I wasn’t going to ignore those daily goals by making myself write down the actual word count achieved each day.
As you can see, I’m currently 4,345 words behind where I should have been yesterday (should have been at 11,540 if I had written those 1,385 needed words each day since Friday, but I’m only at 7,195). Which means I have some catching up to do this week. (And, yes, the cover of my planner is pretty much the exact same color as the background of my website.)
Fortunately, I’m taking a road trip this weekend, albeit a short one. I’m driving down to Birmingham, AL, on Friday to give a workshop to the RWA group down there—a workshop on Plotting for the Seat of the Pants writer. And as it’s one that I’ve done a few times now, that leaves me free to WRITE IN THE CAR going down and coming back. So, not only am I hoping to get caught up to where I should be before I leave on Friday, I’m hoping to be able to get a little bit ahead if at all possible this weekend.
Have you ever sat down and made a daily word-count-goal calendar? How do you keep track of your writing goals? How do you keep track of whether or not you’re meeting your word-count goals?