The Year of the Pen

    Since it’s the end of the year, it seems like a good time to do some inventory. I’ve already compiled the stats on my reading in 2011. Now I’m looking at my writing.
    I use a spreadsheet to track my word-count. I’ve already explained my love of spreadsheets, so I won’t go into it again. But I am particularly proud of my word count/calendar spreadsheet.
    Since January 2011, I have written 100,769 words. The best month was July, with 29,114 words (I had two weeks off work and no vacation plans). The next highest was November, when I was participating in NaNoWriMo, and racked up 15,749 words. The worst month was January, when I didn’t write a single word (or at least, didn’t log any). I also haven’t logged anything in December, but have been thinking about my stories nearly nonstop and will probably get some writing in this week before I return to work.
    This translates into a monthly average of approximately 8,400 words. Broken down even more, I wrote an average of 1,900 each week. The highest daily total in 2012 was in July, when I wrote 8,542 words. If I recall correctly, that included a middle-of-the-night burst of creativity and a trip to my favorite coffee shop later in the day. During NaNoWriMo, my highest daily total was 3,602 words.
    I’m happy to see the six-digit total on my word count. But the results in the real world are less encouraging, at least to me. I am brilliant at starting books. Finishing? Not so much. I did track how many words were written per project, and boy howdy, do I have a lot of unfinished projects.
    The project that I spent most of my time on was a romantic suspense novel that I’m still working on. I added about 56,500 to that one. Then I wrote 21,400 on a story that came out of nowhere and smacked me about the brain until I got out of bed and wrote down the idea. I think it’s going to turn into a trilogy of novellas, and I did write about 3,000 words on the final story.
    I wrote 15,749 on the Nano project. I also wrote about 4,500 words on an old project that I technically had finished, but it was an early work and needs a lot of editing. And an entirely new ending. And well, just a lot of work. I also added a few hundred words here and there on other projects that may or may not ever get finished.
    So, next on my list is to formulate some goals for 2012. You can bet one of them will be to finish something.

    Update:  I got a few more days of writing in, so my final word-count tally for 2011 is 105,986. This changed my monthly and weekly averages to 8,832/month and 2,038/week. See, this is why I love spreadsheets.

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