As the count stands now

During the days of creative frenzy, it seems unwise to think about things like word count. The goal is to get the words down, as quickly and as sublimely as possible. Still, there are conventions to publishing, and most aspiring novelists must find their way into a certain range of word count to be considered for publication.

I made a count of the words I’ve written thusfar for The Sleep of Reason and came to a whopping 81,800 words. I’m not finished; I estimate I have another 20,000 to 25,000 words to write just to get a first draft done. Then I have a series of enhancements I want to make, including adding reference to the passage of seasons (which plays a minor role) as well as shoring up the protagonist’s motivations. I think there is plenty of opportunity to punch up the tone. And so on.

Anyway, I’m already in the word-count zone, and the rest of the writing should set me firmly in there. And with that calculation now completed, I can slip back into the creative frenzy.

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2 Comments on “As the count stands now”

  1. Brian Keaney Says:

    Someone once told me that Graham Greene wrote a thousand words a day and stopped when he reached his total, even if he was in the middle of a sentence. I don’t know whether it’s true but I like to think so.

  2. Paul Lamb Says:

    Similarly, I’ve read that Hemingway (or was it Steinbeck?) would stop in the middle of a sentence so that when he started working the next day, he would have to immerse himself into the creative place where he’d left off.


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