Tag Archives: reading

Numbers Game

2 Oct

This post goes hand in hand with my post “Making Time”. Once I made the time for my writing, an amazing thing happened. My writing actually got somewhere. Color me surprised. And I actually was!

For each hour I wrote, my word count went up. A word count goal to a writer is like heroine to a junkie. Picture me, disheveled, sitting in my car and eagerly scratching at a note pad. Every five minutes, I pick up the note pad and begin to count the words I wrote. Shy of my goal, I grab my pen and feverishly scratch at the pad once more. Finally, I reach my goal. I throw my arms in the air, “Success!” I am sated until the next day when my fix is due.

Word count goals can also be my downfall. If I set them too high, I am doomed to fail every time. I have to be realistic. It is much more satisfying to set a modest goal and succeed than to set a ridiculous goal and fail.

Another risk I face is the temptation to stop and count my words every other minute. This can halt any real progress I am making, and my poor muse ends up with a serious case of whiplash. Instead, I try to guesstimate as I write. I know I write somewhere around 250-300 words per page. It is a lot easier to keep a page count straight in my head without having to stop writing. At the end of my session, I know about how much I wrote.

That doesn’t mean I don’t count each word after my session. Hell yeah, I do! But, at least I have the willpower and the grits to wait until my writing session is finished to count. Most of the time, I find myself within 20-50 words of the figure I ball-parked.

But the ultimate ecstasy is reserved for when I add a day’s word count to the word count total for my novel. At that point, angels sing from the heavens, the lion lays down with the lamb, and everything is right with the world. I go about my day, a stupid grin on my face. If I glowed any more, I would be radioactive. I may get strange looks from passersby, but it doesn’t matter. On these days, I’m the victor fit to wear the title “Writer”.

This is what I look like when I meet my word count goal.

Advertisements

No Time for Reading? Try Listening.

18 Sep

Stephen King once gave this advice to budding writers,

“Read a lot and write a lot.”

I know I am not the only one who thought, “Yeah right, easier said than done.” We all have other things that require our attention and may be considered to be of higher priority than reading. For example, I have to stay on top of the dirty dishes in the sink, or they will just keep multiplying like a bunch of frisky rabbits. And of course, there are the day jobs most of us must trudge to everyday.

What is a writer to do? We know we need to read to help improve our writing, but when?

How does, “Whenever you want,” sound?

I am one busy bee. I am always being pulled this or that direction. You know what I always have on me? My phone and my iPod. When I’m at work, I search through the podcasts to find public domain books that others have read aloud and uploaded. Librivox (librivox.org) is a great resource for this. I am currently listening to Charles Dickens. I have also listened to the works of Thomas Hardy and Charlotte Bronte this way. It is a win-win for me. I am a writer, and an English major. So many of the assigned works I have to read for class are public domain, allowing me to download them for free in most cases.

Libraries are often times overlooked when it comes to audiobooks. My local library allows me to “check out” audiobooks online. I recently listened to Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 for free via an MP3 download from my library’s website. Do you know the best part? No late fees! I am pretty sure I paid for at least one librarian’s yearly salary with my late fees before discovering the internet downloads page on their website.

So break out those earbuds and give listening a try. But I’ll warn you, it is addictive.

C. L. Parson

booknaked

Stripped-Down Book Reviews

Natalie Breuer

Natalie. Writer. Photographer. Etc.

existence !

blog de philosophie imprévisible, dir. Jean-Paul Galibert

annamosca

Poetic Landscapes Of The Spirit

Street of Dreams

A literary blog of poet, playwright and essayist Rachael Stanford

ellisnelson

children's author

justlatsblog

4 out of 5 dentists recommend this WordPress.com site

Robin Reynolds

Writer, artist, entrepreneur. Purveyor of big dreams and glittery things. Engaged in the business of redefining creative success.

Book Hub, Inc.

The Total Book Experience

Slingshot...Fiction, Adult, Romance, Fantasy Stories

Blogging words unspoken, with Cowgirl Celeste www.slingshotbaby69.wixsite.com/slingshot

Shifa Naseer

My blog is my own kingdom and words are my subjects

A Pen Full of Vinegar

Who is my ideal reader? Well, ideal means non-existent. I have no notion of whom I’m writing for. Guy Davenport

Cinthia Ritchie

Author of "Dolls Behaving Badly"

The Thriving Creative

Where creativity and business collide

The Bearded Presbyterian

A Confessional Presbyterian Resource

ChichiKir

A writer writes...

Katherine Alton

Houses of the Broken and Other Stories

Mesh

A science-fiction series

Books I Read

Curious reads and finds

Studio Tendra

Explorations of digital publishing, literary apps, bookish websites, and other readable creations

WHAT THE HELL

Kevin Brennan Writes About What It's Like

quest2publish

My journey to get published from humble beginnings to becoming a published author.. One day soon ...

Life is a story. Write it.

Author page for Timothy H. Scott

Amy Trueblood | Author

A wink, a smile, and a happily ever after