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Thread: How long does it take to write a book?

  1. #76
    Livin' la vida biblia ASeiple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laer Carroll View Post
    Classic symptoms of addiction! I wonder if there's twelve-step program for that.
    If there is, please let me know so I can stay far away from it. Don't want to risk losing my mojo.

    Quote Originally Posted by Laer Carroll View Post
    I see you are using Goodreads for your blog. Neat! You have good company, among them Lois McMaster Bujold.
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  2. #77
    Abnormal Romance Author thethinker42's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ASeiple View Post
    There's no wrong way to write. Do whatever makes your stories.
    Totally agree. I've had SO MANY people (condescendingly) tell me I shouldn't focus on word counts, quotas, etc., for various reasons...but that's what drives me forward when I start to slump. Of course the story drives me, but those quotas and goals (along with deadlines) keep me writing when I really want to be lazy. Discipline and all.

    I'm in this for the long-haul, come what may. Be interesting to see what shifts when I manage to make this a full-time job.
    Good luck! For what it's worth, when I went full-time, I turned into a workaholic -- 12-14 hour days, 6-7 day weeks -- to the point it nearly cost me my marriage and my health. I've since scaled back to a more reasonable schedule. I probably work around 50 hours a week now, keeping a consistent output of 5,000 words a day (more if I feel like it or I'm on serious crunch time). So, the moral to my cautionary tale -- full-time can become FULL-TIME very easily. I expected to be lazy, and wound up being a workaholic. Moderation, yo.
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  3. #78
    Abnormal Romance Author thethinker42's Avatar
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    Those who want to tack word counts -- I've got a spreadsheet I've been using for several years now. If you'd like a copy to see if it works for you, let me know.
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  4. #79
    lethargically ardent, fervidly agog JCornelius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thethinker42 View Post
    /.../Good luck! For what it's worth, when I went full-time, I turned into a workaholic -- 12-14 hour days, 6-7 day weeks -- to the point it nearly cost me my marriage and my health. I've since scaled back to a more reasonable schedule. I probably work around 50 hours a week now, keeping a consistent output of 5,000 words a day (more if I feel like it or I'm on serious crunch time). So, the moral to my cautionary tale -- full-time can become FULL-TIME very easily. I expected to be lazy, and wound up being a workaholic. Moderation, yo.
    Cheers with my coffee cup! On my side the marriage also began at one point grazing riffs and taking water and boy did I suddenly make a U turn from totally submerged workaholic hermit to sane and caring spouse. One cool side effect is it motivated me to stop trying to write the perfect book--that's a weight off my shoulders.

    The workaholic hermit stuff could be OK if you're single... or if you live with the same type of person and your utopia is growling at each other with bleary eyes and then making wild love on the kitchen floor while both trying to remember relevant details to later include in the manuscript.
    Last edited by JCornelius; 06-02-2017 at 09:19 AM.
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  5. #80
    Abnormal Romance Author thethinker42's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCornelius View Post
    Cheers with my coffee cup! On my side the marriage also began at one point grazing riffs and taking water and boy did I suddenly make a U turn from totally submerged workaholic hermit to sane and caring spouse. One cool side effect is it motivated me to stop trying to write the perfect book--that's a weight off my shoulders.
    I still struggle with the perfectionist tendencies, but I've at least been able to cut myself some slack in terms of productivity. Yes, I'd damn well better produce 5,000 words on a work day, but maybe not *every* day needs to be work day. And maybe I don't need to work until bedtime every day. So...it's better now. I don't burn out as badly (which is great since my last Bout O' Burnout manifested itself in a 4-month ordeal of walking pneumonia), and my marriage is much better. So it's all good. Balance, moderation, etc.

    The workaholic hermit stuff could be OK if you're single... or if you live with the same type of person and your utopia is growling at each other with bleary eyes and then making wild love on the kitchen floor while both trying to remember relevant details to later include in the manuscript.
    Fortunately, I live with someone who's more or less a hermit too. We socialize on occasion, and we travel a lot, but for the most part we're both content to stay home with our cats. As long as I balance my work time with my not-work time, we're good.
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  6. #81
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin T.O.Shadow's Avatar
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    Just adding my vote for the "everyone is different" box. I have been writing for a long time, some books go insanely fast (My last book was done and edited for 2nd draft in 3.5 weeks at 100k words(god I love that book)) and others go glacially slow (My first book took 5 years at 168k words). But then again, I'm a discovery writer through and through; we tend to do things . . . um, differently.

    It seems like everyone writes how they write. I would say though, I have noticed that a good way to kill a series is to not finish subsequent books in a timely fashion. just my observation.
    Last edited by T.O.Shadow; 06-13-2017 at 03:03 AM.
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  7. #82
    practical experience, FTW chompers's Avatar
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    I've written 40k+ in one day. For Nano -- I always go slow in the beginning and then take the last day off to write like crazy. And it shows. I usually end up deleting a big portion of it.

    But when it's not Nano, I'm slow, because I think through everything before I write it down, of how it affects the rest of the plot. But it's much cleaner. So my rough drafting is the part that takes longer, and the editing goes by quickly. I also am one of those weirdos that prefer the editing portion.

    But I think I'd be able to write a few thousand in a day on a regular basis if I wrote full time. Well, if I don't procrastinate. :P
    Last edited by chompers; 06-12-2017 at 05:55 AM.

  8. #83
    Ships full of vampires are hell. AW Moderator amergina's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T.O.Shadow View Post
    I'm a discovery writer through and through; we are the spastic crazy kids of the insane asylum that are writers.
    Can we please not use this kind of language to talk about writing? It demeans mental illness.

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  9. #84
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin T.O.Shadow's Avatar
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    Sorry, I didn't mean to be insensitive. It just never offends me when people say things like that (I have AS myself, so . . .) I will edit it though. Apologies.
    "The thing that gets us into the most trouble isn't what we don't know, but what we know for sure that just ain't so."

    Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)

  10. #85
    figuring it all out
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    I just focus on writing a little every day, with more for the weekend. I've been able to hit about 500 words on weekdays and on weekends between 1500-2500. That way, even though I'm a first time writer, I've been able to make steady progress. Having some kind of goal helps, at least to me.
    First time writer. Go ahead, rain on my parade!

  11. #86
    ... with the High Command Dave.C.Robinson's Avatar
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    I spent fifteen years of fits and starts on my first novel and then sat down and decided I was going to finish it. I wrote the first draft in just under a year by forcing myself to write every day. I needed the "write every day" thing to get over the first novel hump, but I haven't felt the same need for any subsequent book. My most recent novel took just under four months to draft, but I can already feel the next one is going more slowly.

    The only thing I know is that as long as I keep writing I can and will finish this book and whatever comes next. I don't have to follow any other rules than don't delete the work and keep on going.


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