I’m in the middle (figuratively, not literally) of writing book #3 of my Mystery Writers Mystery series. This one is tentatively titled METAPHOR FOR MURDER.
I’m an outliner, so before I start the day’s writing, I read the pertinent section of my synopsis and timeline, then the last few lines of what I’ve completed of the manuscript and off I go. I keep track of my progress from day to day, setting my timer for one-hour increments, not just because it makes the math easier, but because it reminds me to stretch and move around a bit. For a sedentary job, writing is fairly physical! I rarely write more than three hours per day, and I take off weekends and Wednesdays.
Here are the current stats after 20 writing days:
total words: 50,030
total pages: 177
average words per hour: 1095
average words per hour one: 1105
average words per hour two: 1135
average words per hour three: 1093
best hour: 1426 words
worst hour: 853 words
My least productive writing day was July 6th. I spent too much time trying to reacquaint myself with some recurring secondary characters, the members of Charlee’s critique group. They made no appearance in book #2 (which is already written and with my editor), since FOUL PLAY ON WORDS is set at a writer’s conference in Portland instead of where they live in Colorado, so I haven’t hung around them for a couple of years. I’ve missed them!
But knowing a critique group scene was coming up, I should have revisited my character pages for each of them, then read the synopsis, and then taken a shower or walked on the treadmill or even just sat with my coffee and mulled over how I envisioned the scene and all of them in it. I shouldn’t have taken away from my production time by doing pre-production work. Lesson learned.
Writing is much more fun when it’s fast and easy.