Year of writing: update 2 – April to June

Writing a million words in a year sounds like a crazy challenge. In fact, it is somewhat crazy. However, what is life or writing without a bit of a challenge here and there? So, along with my dedication to a year of writing, I also wrapped in the milwordy challenge – to write 1 million words in a single year. The first three months of this challenge went quite well. When committing to as much as possible for an entire year, it’s important to track every word – which can be a challenge in itself. Now that we have gotten past the first sixth months of the challenge, it’s time for an update to see how I have been doing. So without further ado, here is my year of writing: update 2, covering April to June.

Year of writing: update 2

April

I knew April would be a good month for writing – or at least I hoped it would be. After all, I tend to do my most prolific writing during NaNoWriMo, and April just happened to be Camp NaNoWriMo – especially a spring version of the original writing challenge. Much like with all my previous NaNoWriMo attempts, I had good days and then some lackluster days when it came to writing. However, overall, the writing flowed pretty well with this story and before long I had reached the end of the month. The final result of Camp NaNoWriMo was 62,457. This is great because the goal for this writing project was 50,000.

On top of this writing, I did a pretty decent amount of blog work, journaling, note-making, and a few other writing tasks that really bumped up the word count. This helped me write 99343 words total for the month, which is well over the needed 82200. I’m quite happy with how much I got written in April and I know doing Camp NaNoWriMo was a big help in getting so many words.

April writing stats:

  • Words written: 99343
  • Words needed: 82200

May

Often time, after finishing Camp NaNoWriMo or NaNoWriMo, I am completely done with writing for a while. I have pushed myself to get as much writing done as possible and all I want to do after that is take a break. Even though I also feel that desire to finish that particular story at the same time. However, with the year of writing challenge, I don’t really get the luxury of doing that. If I were to ignore writing for several weeks, I would fall behind. Now, while I did slack off a bit when focusing on the project I had just been working on, I did get a decent amount of writing done elsewhere.

I’ve been wanting to try to write some short stories for a while and this was the month I played around with them a lot. I must say, it’s a lot harder to write a short story than a full-length novel – despite the fact I have never actually finished writing an entire novel. I think my biggest struggle is the size constraint. As I find with novels I can freely write and not necessarily worry about how long it is. Whereas with short stories, you really need to focus the story down to maintain the proper length while also giving the plot its proper attention. It’s hard, but I am up for the challenge.

Between working on my NaNoWriMo story, a few short story ideas, blog work, and a few other projects, I managed to write 79381. That means I was a bit shy of the 84940 mark that I needed to hit for the month. However, I have written above my needed word count goal during some other previous months.

May writing stats:

  • Words written: 79381
  • Words needed: 84940

June

This is the month where things started to go downhill quite a bit. However, it’s not entirely my fault. There were days where I didn’t feel like writing, which can happen to the best of us. However, my greatest writing hurdle in June was my computer issues. These started around the halfway point in the month and got progressively worse. I put a lot of time into troubleshooting, hoping it was something that could easily be fixed. However, when you are dealing with a 10-year-old computer, sometimes you have to accept there is little you can do. Eventually, we determined that a number of parts would need to be replaced, such as the motherboard. While I did try to write in the second half of the month, it was difficult to, as I never knew when my computer would crash, potentially losing everything I wrote – autosave only helps so much after all. So, I made the decision to not write in the last couple of weeks of the month.

Needless to say, my word count took a major hit because of this. In June, I managed to write 29,815 words, which is less than half of the 82,200 words I needed for the month.

June writing stats:

  • Words written: 29815
  • Words needed: 82200

This brought my total word count for the first half of this milwordy challenge to 475,658. While I am a bit behind from the 495,940 words that I should be at, I was actually pleasantly surprised to see I’m closer than I initially thought. It has happened that I had a few really strong months at the start which helped to give me a buffer zone for those months I didn’t write as well. I still feel confident that I can hit that 1 million word mark by the end of the year.

I hope you enjoyed my second year of writing update. Have you been writing much this year?

12 Comments

  1. This is super impressive! I’ve never thought about having a writing target goal before, great idea. That’s interesting what you say about short stories being more challenging than a novel, but that makes sense. Hopefully you’re able to close out the year and hit your million! Thanks for the inspiration.

    1. Author

      Thank you. This is my first time trying a big writing goal, previously my only goals to hit were 50k words during NaNoWriMo. It’s certainly a challenge but I am glad I am trying it.

  2. Thanks for sharing your year of writing update 2! I love this challenge! It is amazing how much writing you have done! I don’t track my writing but perhaps it is good idea to calculate how many words I write per month.

    1. Author

      Thank you. I’ll admit, I doubted I could write this much even when I decided to give this a try, but now I’m glad I am doing it and seeing just how much I can write in a single year. It could be fun to track your words for a month to see where you fall in, I bet you’d be surprised how much you write in that time.

  3. Oh my goodness, you are amazing! I’m sorry about your computer challenges, though. I’m always inspired by your prolific writing, especially right now because I’m really trying to increase my blog post output to three per week, which would be about 5,000 words. Thanks so much for sharing your year of writing update for April through June.

    1. Author

      Thank you! Technology issues are a fact of life but at least we were able to get them fixed in a decent amount of time. I’m happy to hear you find inspiration from my writing challenge. That’s great to hear that you are trying to increase the amount you put out each week on the blog.

  4. Sounds good. Your stats are quite impressive. Good job.

  5. I like to read your Year of Writing reports. They are inspiring and encouraging. They seem to give me a little “kick” to keep going when I slow down.

    1. Author

      Thank you. I’m glad my updates help to inspire you to keep at your work. I know I often feel the same way when reading about others accomplishments, it’s great motivation to get your own stuff done.

  6. Well done Sarah. Life becomes boring, being firmly fixed inside of our comfort zone. Life BEGINS with a good challenge!

    Ryan

    1. Author

      Thank you. I completely agree with you. Comfort zones really do tend to hold us back and this challenge has certainly pushed me out of my writing comfort zone.

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