I spent yesterday creating a spreadsheet to chart my writing productivity in 2005. Last year, I logged my writing tasks on a calendar beside my favorite chair. Yesterday, I plugged that mostly accurate information (including word counts for each new piece created) into the spreadsheet, inserted the SUM function and presto—my word count for the entire year.
58,501. A pittance. A spit in the wind.
Now, granted, I spent seven months revising one novel, so that doesn’t get counted in the word count total (in fact for this year I added a new column—number of pages of revision or critique so the volume is more tangible.) But considering that my first novel was 50,000 words written in less than a month, you can see why 58,500 in a year was less than noteworthy.
On the other hand, it was quite a successful year all around. I came out around $50 in the black (not counting the cost of a writing conference). I sold two pieces and had two others published without payment. I sent tons more queries and contest entries than past years. And I critiqued two entire novels for friends.
This year my goal is to fill in more of the blank spaces on my spreadsheet, to write even little bits, such as this blog, on a more consistent basis. My plate this year is full of house selling and house hunting and moving, kids’ sporting events, library volunteer hours, friendships, and family. But maybe with more demands on my time, I’ll actually get more done.
At least now I have a tangible tool to hold me accountable!