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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Open Discussions About Writing » Which is a better goal per day?

   
Author Topic: Which is a better goal per day?
Monolith
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I just wanted to get some input from you guys. Which is a better goal: X amount of pages per day or X amount of words per day?

Just curious about what you guys think.

-Monolith-


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Beth
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Which is a better goal for a runner: x miles per week or x kilometers per week?


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Karloff
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That's only a question we in the computer age can ask, right?

I'm a page guy. One page = 250 words.

Reason 1 -- This is what I learned when I first started writing.

Reason 2 -- This is the way editors count words. Good thing to know when you're trying to figure out how much you can produce a week, a month, a year.

But I don't think it makes too much difference. Because of dialogue you're going to write more if you count words and not pages. That's the only difference.

More important FOR ME is writing every day. Also, I try to write 2 hours a day and a page every 15 mintues. Steady production is a goal I aim for. It is the hallmark of professionalism.

[This message has been edited by Karloff (edited January 22, 2006).]

[This message has been edited by Karloff (edited January 22, 2006).]


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Silver3
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I go for same writing time every day (like 1-2 hours). Even if those hours are spent staring vacantly at the computer, they count as writing time.

I haven't tried word/page count.


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Christine
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Which is better? Whichever works!

Personally, I do word count but page count makes no sense for a person who writes in 20 pt. font.

As for amount of writing versus time spent writing, I like amount. It's more result based. I can spend a hundred hours staring at a screen and never write a thing. I need a goal that gets my fingers flying. On the other hand, if I have to delete all those words the next day and start over it's ok, but at least I wrote something.


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Robert Nowall
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I had a lengthy reply, only to lose it somewhere in cyberspace when I mistyped my password. Suffice it to say that it's important to set goals, even if you miss them---because the guilt of missing them can motivate you to eventually return and do something about your goals.
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x__sockeh__x
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Whatever works for you really.
I'd try doing __ words/pages per day and spend at least __ hours/minutes per day doing it.
=) Hope this helps.
--Brittany

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rcorporon
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I try for a mix between pages and time. I like to write 1 - 2 hours a day, however, if after 1 hour I only have 1/2 a page, I'll keep writing until I have written 2 or 3 pages, however long it takes.
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Shendülféa
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I usually try and do a page if I can, but that doesn't always happen (time contraints and sometimes sheer laziness ) so then I at least try and write a few sentences. It depends on how fast you want to get the story done. I'm in no hurry so I don't worry too much about getting a lot written everyday.
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The Fae-Ray
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I, personnally work with a different kind of goal. When writing I'll usually have a goal that has something to to with "parts." I mean, I'll decide "Today I'm going to finish this part" meaning finish that area of the story, or "Today I'll divide the story into chapters." It works much better for me than picking a word goal, because I find that when I work with word goals and I run out of things to write, my story becomes empty and emotionless. Don't stretch yourself out, because that can wreck a story completely.
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rcorporon
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^^ Great advice.
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mikemunsil
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BIC per day, definitely!
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arriki
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I find that it works best for me to set a low goal for each day. Say 500 words of new text. Doesn't have to be good, just has to be done. I usually write -- when I can write -- more like 1000 to 1500 words a day, so the 500 is an easy mark.

What it is, is that I have no trouble reaching my goal each day. I set myself up to succeed.

If for some reason things outside writing aren't going well (I'm sick, on vacation, etc.) I cut my goal down to even as low as 100 words a day. That way I succeed and feel good about my writing all the time because I am reaching my "goal" every day.

[This message has been edited by arriki (edited January 23, 2006).]


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Christine
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You know, asriki, I think you may have hit on something that could help me. Ever since I had my baby (November 17) I have hardly written anything and because I can't possibly get up to the word count goals I set before I often just give up the whole idea of writing. Now I'm out of touch, out of ideas, and in need of something -- maybe a ridiculously small word count goal per day. I'll try that starting tomorrow and let you know how it goes.
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AaronAndy
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My goal, at least right now, is 1,000 words per day Mon-Sat and 5,000 per week. That way even if I don't quite make my daily goal every day (or end up not writing at all one day) I can still make the weekly goal. It also works out nice that Saturday, which is usually the day I have the most time to write, is the end of the counting week, so I can write extra if I'm behind.

I usually find that when I have a time goal instead of a word goal I end up staring at the page or screen for the whole time without really writing much.

This is, of course, still the first draft of my WIP. I imagine that when I get the story finished and start refining it I'll probably need to modify my goal system a little bit.

I had to try several different things before I got to this one, so I totally agree with everyone whose said that the best system is whatever works for you. Test out a few different systems and see which one you like, or which one makes you work harder, or which one is the most reasonable given the current state of your life.


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