[Non-Fluff] First quarter results

I have made it through my first 3 months of being serious about writing. Hooray! I am still going strong, not giving up. This is a huge deal for me. I’ve been looking over my numbers in general, its nice to see.

For starters, I started a blog. This was something that I didn’t expect to do as early as I did. Unfortunately, I have persuasive friends. In the end, it was more words getting done and even if I wasn’t writing here, it has kept me going and more focused than I would have otherwise, I think. I keep worrying about not writing here though. I want to be more… professional? … dedicated? … Not sure what the right word would be. Just want to be doing it right. In 3 months I have gotten 11.3k words done on this blog. That’s still 11.3k more that I wouldn’t have got done if I didn’t do it. I shouldn’t sell myself short on that. But I have only done 29 posts in 3 months, little over 2 posts a week average. Not horrible, not what I wanted. But, only the first 3 months, still need to give myself some slack.

On the flip side though, since starting this blog I have actually written less story stuff, only about 1100 words and that was all in January. I try, I really do try. But I can’t do it – yet. I have spent much time working on fixing this, reading, learning, trying different things. I am optimistic, something that I don’t often feel, that I will be able to do much better in the next quarter. And practice, practice, practice. I also stopped doing critiques after January which were part of my word count, just felt bogged down by everything and unable to focus enough to do critiques well.

Where I have been shining is my personal journal. Any words are good words, and I have been slinging a lot of words there. What I find interesting is that in February I did decent on my blog, but my personal journal went down the drain. I try not to throw personal stuff here, and I don’t think I did, so trying to figure out why the dip. I have never been good at writing a journal, especially when I need to. I internalize way more than I should. It was the first month of homeschooling, the first month of the blog, last month of a long cold winter stuck inside and lots of changes in my personal life. But lately I have been redoubling my efforts. It has become a brain dump and has helped get the words flowing. This in turn will help with brain dumps while writing.

So in the end, I am sitting at 35.5k words for 3 months of work. I am averaging 2700 a week, my goal was 5k a week, but it’s not a bad start. The last 2 weeks I have hit 5200 and 6000, so I know I can do it. February’s dip was what killed my average, if I can just persevere reaching my goals would not be difficult.

So, going forward what do I need to do? Write more. Bottom line. Always.

Even with as much as I did, I need to do more. I started off doing a book a week with a review, then I hit a book I didn’t like and faltered. This always stymies my reading for some reason. I need to get reading more, I just don’t have the technical skills to write if I don’t. Certain things don’t come second nature while I am writing, it makes writing even harder and I have enough troubles writing. So, more reading. Going back to a book a week. Even if its just a short story or a novella, I just need to be reading.

I need to be writing more. 5k a week is possible, I have proven that, I just need to find a way to do it. While I am good with any words written are good words, I do want to increase my word count to at least 25% being story words. Even if its just crappy first drafts, I need story words, not just ranting at the world words.

I also need to be blogging and critiquing more. I need to find better content for my blog. I am not very chatty really, so being chatty on a blog isn’t working for me either. I still don’t know what to do about that. Hard to write when I don’t know what I am writing about. Critiquing is a matter of focus and drive. I understand the value of critiquing, both to myself and others. It gets me exposed, gets me reading, gets me writing, gets me thinking like a writer and helps me with editing my own stuff. With the sites I use it also earns me the right to post my stuff to be critiqued, when I get around to writing stuff. Then it helps others get feedback and continue the loop, a nice pay it forward system. So, how to focus and get critiques done? Not sure. Sheer determination, which I love to fall back to but unfortunately doesn’t always work.

Lots to think about, lots of good work done, lots more work to do.

The too long; didn’t read version? I am awesome and I am doing what I love and getting it done. Go me!