I have an aversion to word count as a sole measure of writing progress. In the profession, word count is a tool, a device for editors to identify scale and to help authors develop structure.
Yet it’s popularly treated as a way of measuring how far the work is getting ahead. But when the draft’s finished – what then? The reality of writing is that a draft is far from a complete work. Often it’s only half way to finished, maybe less.
My tip today – why not think of the whole thing as writing? Drafting, re-writing, revising, editing – all these are different aspects of the wider creative process. What counts are the shapes and patterns of the written work – the way it takes a reader on an emotional journey.
The point is that the whole journey is there to be enjoyed. It should be fun (even though some writing is hard yakka).
Put another way, how we get there as writers – our own journey – is a complete experience.
Copyright © Matthew Wright 2013
Coming up: More writing tips, NaNo prompts and more – watch this space.