I Had An Epiphany
 
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I Had An Epiphany

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(@reuben)
Posts: 201
Bronze Star Member
Topic starter
 

So after reading and rereading that insufferable rule that your first 500-1000k are practice, I realized that maybe, just maybe, becoming a professional writer won't be so easy. Then I had an idea. If I wrote 1000 words every day, then in two years I'll have significantly over 500k words! That wasn't my epiphany, though. My epiphany was far, far more epiphany-like than that.

This was it, and I tell you, it's a whopper. My epiphany was that if I doubled that to two thousand, then in only one year I'll have reached my goal. Genius no? I came to this after writing 2,500 words today and saw that it was possible. I decided that I'll post this for posterity, and maybe, just maybe, someone else will want to join me. It's not that I haven't written anything before, but here's a new start.

I seriously don't know why I didn't think of this before.  grinning

This was my idea in specifics: 2000 words, six days a week, (I don't write on Saturday) with a little leeway between days, plus 500 free. That is, 11,500 words a week. Multiplied by 52, you get 598,000. (Easier than nanowrimo, only around 48,000) If I want to hit 600k you have to do extra credit.
fistinair  

I understand that obviously you don't get to be a professional just by writing random words on a paper, but my problem is sitting down for a significant period of time, and then, when getting up to a stopping point, keeping on going. My plan for going through with this is by doing KYD exercises, writing short stories, doing other random exercises, and then, when I get to be better, writing a novel. So if anyone is interested, (not that I expect you too,) please post on this thread. I'm going to start for myself in the beginning of next week.

Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm ~ Winston Churchill
V37: R, R, R, HM
V38: SHM

 
Posted : May 31, 2020 10:40 am
RETreasure
(@rschibler)
Posts: 915
Gold Star Member
 

I’ve always heard it as your first million words — Jerry Pournelle said “your first 500,000 to one million words”, Heinlein is attributed as saying “Your first million words are [beep]” and I’ve heard it from other places as well.

I think the more important point is that our first efforts are going to be beginner’s work. I like the piano analogy: You wouldn’t start playing the piano and expect a gig at Carnegie Hall in six months, yet writers get frustrated that we aren’t selling when we’ve written two stories. We have to master our craft, just like anyone else.

I’ve tracked my word count (of new words only, not edits) since I began writing in January of 2017. As of today I’ve written 540,000 words. If you do the math, that’s about 400 words on average a day. I sold my first pro pay story in October. So yes, it is possible. Just keep writing, make it a habit, make it a routine.

V34: R,HM,R
V35: HM,R,R,HM
V36: R,HM,HM,SHM
V37: HM,SF,SHM,SHM
V38: (P)F, SHM, F, F
V39: SHM, SHM, HM, SHM
Pro’d out Q4V39
Always Available for 5-page Critiques
CV & Editing Services: www.rebeccaetreasure.com
Reviews & Short Stories: www.patreon.com/rebeccaetreasure

 
Posted : May 31, 2020 11:42 am
Henckel
(@henckel)
Posts: 455
Silver Star Member
 

I love the enthusiasm! Rock on.

WOTF Stats
(2014) V31 – R
(2018) V35 – HM
(2019) V36 – HM, SHM
(2020) V37 – R, HM, SHM, Finalist
(2021) V38 – SF, SHM, SHM, HM
(2022) V39 – HM, SHM, SHM, SHM
(2023) V40 - tba, tba, tba, tba

Other Achievements
(2019) Cowboy for a Day, published in Escape Anthology
(2020) Magician's Midlife Crisis, published by Sci-Fi Lampoon
(2020) Survived lockdown with minimal emotional scarring
(2021) Mike Resnick Memorial Award - 3rd Place winner!!!
(2022) Echoes of Gliese, published by Galaxy's Edge Magazine (January issue)
(2022) Heaven or Bust, published by Bag of Bones Press: 206 Word Stories
(2022) The Button Girl, published by The Academy of Heart and Mind
(2022) The Reaping of Blackroot Hollow will be published by Galaxy's Edge Magazine
(2022) ... another publication, but I can't disclose details quite yet

 
Posted : May 31, 2020 1:57 pm
(@reuben)
Posts: 201
Bronze Star Member
Topic starter
 

Thanks for the encouragement, everyone!

I think the more important point is that our first efforts are going to be beginner’s work. I like the piano analogy: You wouldn’t start playing the piano and expect a gig at Carnegie Hall in six months, yet writers get frustrated that we aren’t selling when we’ve written two stories. We have to master our craft, just like anyone else.

I’ve tracked my word count (of new words only, not edits) since I began writing in January of 2017. As of today I’ve written 540,000 words. If you do the math, that’s about 400 words on average a day. I sold my first pro pay story in October. So yes, it is possible. Just keep writing, make it a habit, make it a routine.

I totally agree, although I suspect that your average of 400 is only because there were many days that you didn't write. My best writing comes from days when I wrote at least 1000 words, and I suspect that this is the case for others as well.

Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm ~ Winston Churchill
V37: R, R, R, HM
V38: SHM

 
Posted : June 1, 2020 1:17 am
RETreasure
(@rschibler)
Posts: 915
Gold Star Member
 

Oh definitely- that’s just an average. I shared that to point out that 400 words a day isn’t an overwhelming goal and it will still get you 500,000 words in just a few years. I tend to write 4-6 days/week.

V34: R,HM,R
V35: HM,R,R,HM
V36: R,HM,HM,SHM
V37: HM,SF,SHM,SHM
V38: (P)F, SHM, F, F
V39: SHM, SHM, HM, SHM
Pro’d out Q4V39
Always Available for 5-page Critiques
CV & Editing Services: www.rebeccaetreasure.com
Reviews & Short Stories: www.patreon.com/rebeccaetreasure

 
Posted : June 1, 2020 1:58 am
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
 

Oh definitely- that’s just an average. I shared that to point out that 400 words a day isn’t an overwhelming goal and it will still get you 500,000 words in just a few years. I tend to write 4-6 days/week.

Heh-heh. I have a Super Secret coming up on this topic. You're on the right track, Reuben. My only suggestion is to make sure any goal you set is always within reach, not outside of it, so that it pushes you without discouraging you. We want reachable goals, whatever that means for us.

Writing on set days and having target word counts will certainly help.

All the beast!

Wulf Moon

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : June 1, 2020 6:09 am
(@pumpkin_1617101149)
Posts: 28
Advanced Member
 

It does sound like a great idea but I’m not sure if I have enough ideas to write so many words in a day. I must start describing all the objects in my house, but I feel like I might run out of objects 😀

Q3 V37: submitted after some time of staring at an unchanged word doc

 
Posted : June 1, 2020 9:39 pm
Rey Nichols
(@rnichols)
Posts: 63
Bronze Member
 

It does sound like a great idea but I’m not sure if I have enough ideas to write so many words in a day. I must start describing all the objects in my house, but I feel like I might run out of objects 😀

Try pulling up a random image in google and write a flash fiction piece based on it. You'll hit a target word count easy Smile

SHM: 1
HM: 9
R: 1
www.reynichols.com

 
Posted : June 2, 2020 3:13 am
(@wulfmoon)
Posts: 2930
Platinum Plus Moderator
 

It does sound like a great idea but I’m not sure if I have enough ideas to write so many words in a day. I must start describing all the objects in my house, but I feel like I might run out of objects 😀

Every Monday morning we provide an SFF tailored prompt in the Super Secrets' topic. There are also prompt lists on the web.

Best,

Moon

Click here to JOIN THE WULF PACK!
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" won Best SFF Story of 2019! Read it in Writers of the Future, Vol. 35. Order HERE!
Need writing help? My award-winning SUPER SECRETS articles are FREE in DreamForge.
IT’S HERE! Many of you have been begging me for the Super Secrets book. The Illustrated workbook is here! And the book How to Write a Howling Good Story is on its way. Find out the latest HERE!

 
Posted : June 2, 2020 8:16 am
(@pumpkin_1617101149)
Posts: 28
Advanced Member
 

Ah yes, of course! Prompts and google! I forgot they exist, it must be the lack of sleep.

Thanks nreavis, wulf

Q3 V37: submitted after some time of staring at an unchanged word doc

 
Posted : June 2, 2020 9:26 am
Rey Nichols
(@rnichols)
Posts: 63
Bronze Member
 

Ah yes, of course! Prompts and google! I forgot they exist, it must be the lack of sleep.

Thanks nreavis, wulf

I used to know what sleep was...
^ there's a writing prompt right there wotf001

SHM: 1
HM: 9
R: 1
www.reynichols.com

 
Posted : June 2, 2020 3:50 pm
(@pumpkin_1617101149)
Posts: 28
Advanced Member
 

I used to know what sleep was...
^ there's a writing prompt right there wotf001

wotf019 I will write that down in my accumulating pouch of things!

Q3 V37: submitted after some time of staring at an unchanged word doc

 
Posted : June 2, 2020 9:14 pm
(@reuben)
Posts: 201
Bronze Star Member
Topic starter
 

Of course, you could always just aim for 500 a day, or 1000. The point simply is that even on days that you aren't in the mood to write or work on a story you write something. As a wise man once said "Write makes right." wotf011

Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm ~ Winston Churchill
V37: R, R, R, HM
V38: SHM

 
Posted : June 3, 2020 5:07 am
(@simonp)
Posts: 15
Active Member
 

I love this! Dedication is key

 
Posted : June 4, 2020 4:49 am
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