It’s catch-up day redux! Goal: 6.7 hours of writing

Since I didn’t succeed yesterday in catching up, I’ve decided to give it one more go. Today I will try to accumulate 6.7 hours of writing. That’ll give me today’s three hours, plus catch me up with Saturday’s and Sunday’s three hours each.

Whew. I’m only doing this because I need some way to decide how much time to spend writing while I try to finish this book ASAP. My three hour daily goal isn’t likely to be enough unless I start writing five to six times faster than I’ve been writing. Catching up gives me a reason to write for longer. In other words, my brain likes to know the reasons for things, so I’m giving it a reason. ;)

I’ll report progress as I go the same way I did yesterday. I actually liked that format a lot. :)

Progress—

2:53 pm: finished a 3 minute and 13 minute session, wrote 157 words.

Unknown: ended a 5 minute session to research some stuff from previous books in my series, wrote 1 word. Must’ve rewrote something, obviously. :)

Spent way too much time reading through my series doc to find stuff about one particular topic. And then the power went out. I kept reading. :D

5:49 pm: ended a power outage (it’s been a stormy day).

Internet wouldn’t work so I ended up getting distracted by troubleshooting the problem with my modem and router. Finally restarted my computer and problem fixed itself. UGH! Anyway, back to writing. :-|

8:03 pm: finished a 5 followed by a 16 minute session, wrote 99 words.

9:52 pm: ended a session of 32 minutes, wrote 275 words.

11:12 pm: ended a 54 minute session, wrote -12 words.

I keep fixing things that would be better left alone. UGH.

11:53 pm: stopped after a session of 18 minutes, wrote 263 words.

Gave up for the night in frustration. Scene was making me want to pull my hair out.

Final tally: 2.35 hours and 782 words. So far off the mark that I don’t even know what to say. Tomorrow I will write early and forget this late night crap. >:{

It’s catch-up day! Goal: 7.484 hours of writing

As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m trying to write for three hours today, catch up yesterday’s three hours, and finish Saturday’s three hours. That means I’m trying to accumulate 7.484 hours of timed writing today.

Progress—

1:18 pm: finished a session of 61 minutes, wrote 135 words.

3:13 pm: ended a short session of 4 minutes, wrote 36 words.

5:31 pm: ended a 54 minute session, wrote 233 words.

6:54 pm: finished a session of 31 minutes, wrote 107 words.

Speed today is at OUCH levels.

12:13 am: finished another 61 minute session, wrote 157 words.

12:28 am: finished a session of 16 minutes, wrote 71 words.

Okay. I’m calling it.

I wrote for 3.783 hours and 739 words. A lot disappointed but maybe tomorrow will be better.

 

Why am I even writing these posts?

Saturday, I didn’t expect to get much writing done at all, because I had blocked off noon until 7 pm for a family event. Somehow I managed to get up Saturday morning and get started quickly, and I did two sessions for a total of 1.516 hours of timed writing making it to 814 words. After 7 I was too tired to even look at my computer. :o

Sunday, I expected to get a lot of writing done, but I totally flaked out and didn’t do any. Nada. It was a weird day, tbh. I spent too much time in a reflective, depressed mood and I didn’t like it. Not sure what happened there.

Today, I’m going to write today’s three hours, then yesterday’s three hours and then Saturday’s 1.484 remaining hours and see where it takes me. A 7.484 hour day is a huge challenge but strangely enough, I feel up to it today.

*I don’t have an answer for the question posed in the post title, so… no point discussing it.

Stop thinking so hard and just let the words come

Stop thinking so hard and just let the words come.” That’s the note I’ve written to myself in my notebook and those are the first words I saw when I looked at it beside me in hopes of coming up with a title for this post. :)

I’ve spent some time writing today, although only a little, but I don’t know how much because I forgot to start the timer. The fact is, I needed to write a lot today but I let an assortment of interruptions throughout the day keep me away. Now it’s 9:05 PM and I really need to push myself to write for three hours before I go to bed. Any interruptions at all will keep me from reaching that goal, simply because I can’t really afford to go to sleep any later than 1 AM, and I’ll have to finish those three hours by 12:30 at the latest.

I’m going to have to try, but I don’t feel very hopeful. Sadly, that’s probably going to work against me.

On the other hand, I do have to try, so here I go before I waste too much time on this post. It’s now 9:07 PM, probably a record for me and a post! :D


Update:

I didn’t make it to three hours but I did end up with 1.95 which is kind of great, considering how I felt when I started. It only amounted to 322 words, but I made it completely through chapter 16 and started on chapter 17.

Everything takes longer than I think it will

Everything takes longer than I think it will. On the other hand, at least things are getting done. This morning, I had a somewhat harrowing interruption when I had to knock a spider out of the doorway to my deck. I couldn’t check on the kittens while it hung there. It was huge. I hate spiders so yes, it turned into an ordeal, but when I came back to writing, I had thoroughly woken myself up and I started in on my edits with vim and vigor.

I haven’t finished the chapter 15–16 edits, although I’m closer and I’m into chapter 16 now—about half way. My 10:30 deadline came and went, but I’m just happy to be making progress and feeling good about how it’s going. Writing has been fun today.

When I get to the end of what I’ve written, I already know I’ll be deleting the last page or so plus some notes at the end that will probably also amount to a page or so, meaning I expect to lose at a minimum 500–600 words when I get there. But I don’t care. Anything that makes it easier to keep going with this book is good. :)

If I haven’t mentioned it, I’ve been running my timer up instead of down lately, so that’s why all the uneven session lengths. It also helps me see how often something interrupts me, or I interrupt myself.

Sessions (in progress):

  • 19 minutes: 155 words
  • 8 minutes: 50 words
  • 29 minutes: 67 words
  • 41 minutes: 12 words

My word counts are kind of low but I’m finally to the part where I’m about to delete stuff. I think I’m going to have to delete fewer words than I thought to be honest, which is great. And then finally, finally, I can just let myself go and write, write, write! :D

  • 32 minutes: 2 words
  • 38 minutes: 241 words
  • 9 minutes: -302 words
  • 17 minutes: 77 words
  • 23 minutes: 34 words

Total: 3.6 hours of timed writing and 336 words.

No writing last night after all

I took the computer up, but instead of writing I just sat with it on my lap and stared at it until I almost dozed sitting up. At that point, I snapped the lid closed and went to sleep. Just too tired.

Being off my sleep schedule and not getting enough sleep have apparently taken their toll. I need to be writing as early in the day as I can right now while I have enough energy to do it so that’s what I’m about to do.

I’m going to finally get through chapters 15 and 16 this morning (it’s 9:32 am) and I’m going to do it within in the next hour.

By 10:30, I want to be ready to start in on the next chapter.

I’ll be back then to update for some accountability. ;) (Yes, you’re my writing accountability group, whether you want to be or not. You’re reading this, aren’t you? Comment if you want me to return the favor and I’ll cheer you on at your own blog.) :)

Stuck in some kind of OCD loop right now

Deleting 24 pages of posts from Kboards again. Maybe I just didn’t have anything compelling enough to keep my thoughts about this book at bay and I turned to this to distract myself…

Gah. Why do I do this to myself?

Anyway, down to 9 pages of posts and 2 of those pages are deleted topics. You can’t actually delete threads you created so I just delete the actual post and change the subject line.

Off I go to finish this so I can get back to writing.

Be back later. :o

DONE. Whew. I was starting to wonder if I’d be doing this all night.

Thinking about this now, I’m pretty sure I was in the midst of some kind of anxiety episode or something. All evening my skin has felt like it was crawling. I keep thinking I’ve got gnats biting me, but I don’t think there are any actual gnats, even though I’m sitting under a light in the dining room at the moment. I had a shower, and it seems to have helped me, but my skin still feels a bit crawly. I do know I was feeling anxious earlier, and I remember that, because I consciously chose not to make a second cup of tea today, thinking that maybe the caffeine had done it (it was green tea/herbal mix).

All I have to say for myself is that I’m taking my computer to bed with me (to get away from this dang light) and I am going to work on my book! Maybe not for the three hours I had planned and hoped for, but for at least long enough to get through chapters 15 and 16. I’m just not going to bed tonight until I’ve done it, and that’s final.

Be back later. (Although probably not to this post. And maybe not until tomorrow, depending how late I stay up writing!)

Yesterday proved that I do need practice

Yesterday was a bit of a letdown. I couldn’t concentrate (lack of sleep, I believe) and ended up going to bed early.

I didn’t come close to three hours of writing or 1,557 words. I wrote for 44 minutes and added only 90 words to my book. I stopped for lunch and never came back.

Yesterday I wrote:

Today also begins a fresh start on my 1,557 words a day goal. I’ll also be requiring at least three hours a day of writing from myself. I will require this every day, with few exceptions. I’m doing this because I’m starting to believe self-discipline is something you need to practice regularly, and without it, you’re never going to get the most out of yourself long-term.

All yesterday did was prove that I do need practice.

I’m hoping today will go better. But I might wait to post results until the end of the week so I can concentrate on my book and avoid online distractions. Because once I open my browser, I have a difficult time not wasting time.

Self-discipline is a skill: skills take practice and practice takes time

I did not reach any of my goals yesterday. (1557 words, 3 hours writing, finish editing chapters 15 and 16.) I wrote for 2.633 hours and added 122 words to chapter 15.

I didn’t take drastic measures with those chapters as I said I would because things were actually going well with the story. I just couldn’t concentrate, and there didn’t seem to be anything I could do about it. I even turned to a cup of coffee, which didn’t help at all. >:{

Today I am going to finish going through chapter 15 and 16 and I’m going to do it before I stop for lunch.

After lunch, I’m going to write.

Today also begins a fresh start on my 1,557 words a day goal. I’ll also be requiring at least three hours a day of writing from myself. I will require this every day, with few exceptions. I’m doing this because I’m starting to believe self-discipline is something you need to practice regularly, and without it, you’re never going to get the most out of yourself long-term.

I accept that I’ll fall short on the word counts sometimes, because I haven’t changed my writing process and I do end up with days where I delete more than I write. This isn’t about perfection. But by requiring three hours a day from myself, I make it much more likely that on my good days, I might make up some of those lost words. And on days where three hours just doesn’t cut it, I can keep pushing for those 1,557 words.

My biggest hope is that over time I’ll fall into a routine that maximizes the number of words I write in the most reasonable amount of time by consistently staying involved in my story worlds. I’ll stop losing momentum to month-long breaks and I’ll lose less time to massive read-throughs and edits like the one I’m stuck in the middle of now, because I’ll be working on my stories every day. Even if I can’t maintain the three hours and 1,557 words a day pace working on just one story, I can work on other stories. I already know I have that capability.

I’m going at this to build stamina for writing. What I write isn’t as important as the writing itself. Plus, I don’t want to hamstring myself by limiting what I can write. Some days there will be stories I won’t feel capable of or ready to write. Those days need a back up plan. That back up plan is to write something else.

Three hours a day is twenty-one hours a week, and that’s not that much time at all to devote to what is undoubtedly my life’s work.