250 Words a Day

Why 250 Words?

As I detailed in a different blog post, 250 words (using a serif font, like Courier, or the like), when typed out on the page and double spaced, equals about 1 page of manuscript draft.  So for instance, if you set the margins to about 1 inch/1.25 inches, double space, and set the font to Courier, then once you’ve typed your draft from top (ignoring headers) to the bottom (ignoring the footers), you should have approximately 250 words on that page.  This was a trick that typographers in the 1930s-1970s used when setting type from authors manuscripts during the heyday of popular fiction/reading in America. It was so ingrained that it was repeated in the writing handbooks of the day (I know because my local library used to have a fairly large selection of how to write books in the 800s that were fairly old when I was growing up and I often saw this advice–too bad that I really didn’t try to use this advice earlier in life–ah, the follies of youth).

By Any Means Necessary

Now that I know this and now that I know many prolific writers have word counts, I’ve started with the very basic–let’s try for 1 page a day (=250 words).  So far, I’ve been fairly consistent and I’ve managed to finish Project Skies and I’m on Scene 2 (of 3) for Project Poet.  The key is trying to get 250 words down by any means necessary.  Yesterday, I failed at it–I’m just going to be honest.  I only managed about 75 words on Project Poet because I left it too late in the day and by the time bedtime came around, I just didn’t feel like working it (Too tired–I was asleep minutes after going to bed).  This morning, when I awoke, and I tried to write while eating breakfast, but the words wouldn’t come.  I took a shower and then thought about all of the schoolwork that I have to do today and tomorrow and the words on the story came flowing out of me–I had to stop writing it so that I could work on the blog.  If I have other things to do (such as schoolwork), I stop putting off the writing, but if I don’t have other things to do, then its the writing that I put off.  As I always have plenty of schoolwork to do, maybe that’s the key–250 words before starting on the schoolwork

Now I just have to find a way to make sure that my schoolwork doesn’t suffer.  😉

Sidney



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