Saturday, August 6, 2016

Week 4 Writing Challenge Analysis - Glass Half Full - Half Way There!

Wow! Claire Jane, can you believe it's been Four weeks. 28 whole days completed and four weeks to go. Half way there!

This week had good news and bad news.

The Bad first, because I prefer to get it out of the way so I can celebrate the good.

Word Count = Bad
Added 23,973 words to the manuscript. That's 20,607  less words than Week Three's manuscript word count.
From week Three to Week Four, my Free write words per minute was reduced from 6.1 to 2.4 wpm - a drop of 3.8 wpm.
There was also a decided reduction in words per minute in transcription from 23.2 wpm to 12.9 wpm.
Total time invested in my on-line presence (Blog, Social Networks, etc.) was 450 minutes (7.5 hours) less than Week 3.

Here's the rub - the Bad isn't so bad. True, I didn't add 6,000 words a day - this week was about editing - I didn't expect word count, but I was aiming to make my hours. That was what I focused on - and I did get through 40 pages of edits.

Now, The Good:
I added 1,594 words to my blog, which was 212 words more than last week. I spent 2,340 minutes on my manuscript and 195 minutes working on my blog for a total of 2,535 minutes or 42.3 hours - 6.4 hours more than Week 3.
That was 415 minutes or 6.9 hours more than Week 3.

Looking at all that information, you'd think this week's analysis may end up becoming a diatribe about my inability to stick to goals I'd given myself.

I've always been a glass half-full kinda person when it comes to other people, yet tend to be a glass barely filled kinda gal when I'm dealing with myself.

This writing challenge has been very good for me in discovering this. And discovering how destructive my words can be to my belief in myself.

This week was an out and out test to my new "It is what it is" philosophy. If you look at the general data - the surface of the situation - it would be very easy to lambaste myself over my performance.

Here's the thing, though, while I'm not happy that I haven't finished the ugly rough draft of Rogue Master, I discovered that I read and watch television when I try to avoid writing.

It's not like I didn't know that - having become rather an expert at it over the years - what I did discover this week is, that even though I read 8 novels, skimmed and read over half of two other novels, and indulged in three season of Hercules Poirot on Netflix, I still sat my butt down to write. Every day.

Whether it was from midnight to two a.m., or 9:15 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., or 5:45 p.m. to 9:45 p.m. Whether transcribing notes, free writing, constructing a blog post, or editing, I have written for 28 days. Every day I have taken time to write something - anything - and that's something I haven't done in 6 years.

And I'm very proud of myself - very proud.

Because I know this means I'm at the halfway mark of making this a habit. One that I've never had before. Not in the past. Not in all the years I wrote before I was published or the few years after my first book was published.

As I review the data from this week's challenge and reflect on the methods I used in the past, I realize writing wasn't a habit, it was a hobby - a distraction while I was waiting for a good book or movie to come out. Something to do when I was bored with what was on television.

Now, I'm making it a habit that I can build a career on. a career I can be in charge of, and can determine where I want it to go. I'm putting the power back in my hands.

And I'm liking it.

The final analysis of my performance versus my goals for Week 4:

  1. Write every day - achieved
    • 6,000 words or 6 hrs per day - not achieved - average word count per day was 3,196; average time spent editing/transcribing/free writing was 5.6 hours
    • report daily to social media - achieved
  2. Add words to a new manuscript - not achieved - primary focus was on Rogue Master, so I didn't bother working on another manuscript
  3. Post 2 blogs - half achieved
    • Week 3 Analysis blog post - achieved - posted
    • any other blog post - not achieved - There was no response to my blog so I'll be figuring out posts on my own for the time being.
Looking at these details, I think there needs to be modifications to my Week 5 goals, yet not much. With my focus being on editing and adding new, I need to consider that progress in the establishment of my goals.

Considering I have approximately 210 pages of notes and scenes to go through, I'll be adding a minimum page count for editing to my goals. I'll also be taking into account that I'll be returning to work next week, so my available writing time will be shortened.

New goals for Week 5:

  1. Work toward completing Rogue Master manuscript by:
    • Edit a minimum of 20 pages per day or
    • Spend a minimum of 4 hours per day transcribing/writing
    • Post progress and favorite line to Facebook Fan Page and Twitter
  2. Begin work on new manuscript(s)
    • Spend a minimum of 1 hour plotting/outlining each day a new manuscript or
    • Read through previous manuscripts for potential scenes or
    • Transcribe/write on new manuscript for a minimum of 1 hour each day
  3. Post 2 blogs a week
    • Weekly Challenge Analysis - Post by Sunday
    • Create a list of blog posts (minimum 8 posts/subjects)
    • Blog post of any other subject - Post by Thursday
I'll be posting my updates on both my Fan Page on Facebook and under my Twitter account.

Thank you to everyone who has visited my blog and social media sites.

Have a great day!


  1. First--you redecorated the blog and... it looks great!!! Clean, polished, and suggests the owner of the blog is focused and on task. This is great!

    Now for my comments on the analysis...

    Overall, I think you are doing a fantastic job making progress on the manuscript. FANTASTIC!
    When I compare where you were with this manuscript 8 weeks ago to today, it's night and day. Which is... GREAT!
    I also have to admit to liking how you're analyzing the data. I'm seeing a million times less negativity directed at yourself which is such an achievement that I totally believe you should celebrate it then rinse and repeat the positivity each and every day.

    Now for my confession... this will come as no surprise to you having known me for quite some time now, but I... am evil.
    In a good way.
    Because I sort of, um, well, uh... set you up to succeed with this challenge by first applying a metaphorical two by four to your old ways and means.
    Please don't take this as I'm trying to take the glory for your success, because I'm definitely not. What I'm trying to say--and doing it poorly--is that you finally admitted something I've seen for a while and... damned if you didn't write it on this post and make me grin. And yes, I'm referring to this doozy of a revelation:

    "As I review the data from this week's challenge and reflect on the methods I used in the past, I realize writing wasn't a habit, it was a hobby - a distraction while I was waiting for a good book or movie to come out. Something to do when I was bored with what was on television."

    THAT is HUGE. So HUGE that I can't say more to it right now other than to add this...
    it is not necessary to win all the weekly challenges to succeed at this challenge. Transitioning from hobby to career does not happen overnight. Nor does it occur for you the way it happens for others. It's a journey. A process. Where sometimes you will fail to win the battle (weekly challenge) yet get significantly closer to winning the war (developing a career with a writing habit you can't kick).
    You are on the right track. As long as you keep your focus on the main goal--which it sounds like you're just starting to be able to see for yourself and that is... Developing a career with a writing habit you can't kick.
    Good luck and keep up the great work!
    ~Claire Jane Out :-)

    1. Thank you, Claire, and yes, I'm pretty aware that you are evil, in a wonderful way. And I'm very glad I was the one who came to the realization, although I'm sure you've pointed it out to me over the years, I was just needing a two by four upside the head...that I applied myself.
      You're doing a fantastic job yourself, so keep up the good work.