It is the 12th of January 2021. Twelve days into the new year. I wanted to give an update on those things I talked about in the last post in terms of what you can look forward to from the RIU in 2021.
If you remember, in the last post I had listed four goals I wanted to accomplish this year. One of those goals was to raise my word count from 4000 to 5000 words a day. This is a major foundation of two of the other goals. Without this goal, the rest would be difficult to do. Not impossible, but a little more difficult.
The goal was to write at least five days a week 5000 words a day on whatever project that I was currently working on. This does not include anything like this blog post that I’m doing right now. This is just for project work only. So in many instances, I’m writing more than 5000 words a day and it probably can be anywhere from 7k to 10k depending on what I’m doing on that particular day.
Why 5000 words a day? Well, I ran the numbers. The numbers said that at 5000 words a day, five days a week minimum, I can write 100,000 words a month. That gets me a novel every month because my novels average anywhere between 75k to 90k words. This does not include the two Saturdays I work a month which would be an extra 10k. This means a project has to be in the queue all of the time. Since I work off of a summary outline, they need to be done by the first of the month in order for me to begin a new project. Right now, I am working on the first novel in the Makarios Cadre series The Nepios Conspiracy. I’m nearing the end of this and will more likely be done by the end of the week, which means I’ll need to start working on the outline for the next book in the next day or two.
Now, this is a lot of work to lineup and schedule. I get nervous just writing about it. But it’s the only way my goals can be met in terms of writing 12 books this year and releasing six. My reasons for doing this are threefold.
The first is I have a life philosophy. That philosophy is that work is the worship of God. I take this philosophy from Colossians 3:23 in the Bible:
And whatsoever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.Colossians 3:23
I have been blessed with talents and gifts by the Lord Jesus Christ. I want to use those talents to worship Him, and I know that comes through the work He’s given me. So I don’t want to half-step when it comes to this act of worship of the Savior who has blessed me. I want to bless Him as He blesses me.
The second is I know RIU Citizens want more material from me. I want to fulfill that desire for them. My personal survey of my fans has revealed they want two things primarily — special content (which they can receive in The Veiled Athenaeum), and more books. By far, these are the top things RIU Citizens want. This year, the goal is to give it to them in spades.
The third is I want to see how far I can push these abilities I’ve been blessed with. I want to see what I can do. It is not just to see what I can do, but it’s to see how much I can use these gifts to glorify the God I serve in writing my fiction.
That may seem like a lot of work to do with lofty motives to many people, especially those who have been working on a novel for years and just can’t quite get over the hump. I’m really not that special. People like Rachel Aarons and William Faulkner blow me out of the water. There are other writers not as well known who reach heights that double my daily output.
How do they do it? It’s not that difficult if you make it a priority. I don’t sit around waiting for a muse to hit me or for the atmosphere to be infused with feel-good juice. I don’t have that luxury. Most writers who are looking to make writing a major vocation don’t either. It’s sitting your butt down in the chair and doing the work. Writers write. It’s like William Faulker said in a letter to his mother:
“I write when the spirit moves me, and the spirit moves me every day.”William Faulkner
I have to say when I first embarked upon this, I wasn’t sure how it would go. I knew it was doable. I ran the numbers because I know how much I can do within a certain amount of time since I keep a writing diary. Raising my word count to 5000 words was not a major endeavor in terms of whether or not I would have the time or be able to put in the effort to do it. That was not an issue at all. The issue I was concerned with was myself and whether I would have the discipline to push forward and fulfill this goal on a daily basis.
Well, I’m happy to report that completing 5000 words a day for at least five days a week has been a pleasing success so far. I’ve written for a total amount of seven days (I didn’t write yesterday because something -personal and unexpected happened, so my plan is to try and catch up by working this Saturday). The number of words was 36,620. My average word count per day has been 5231 words with my best day being 5554.
Like I said…it’s doable.
I woke up this morning and pounded out a little over 2000 words before I started working on other things. I plan to write 2000 more before mid-noon. I’ll finish up my last 1000 words some time by mid-afternoon of my total word count unless something happens in between now and then. And again, it doesn’t include this post which is something like another 800 or so words.
All that to say so far, 2021 is shaping up to be a year of promise. Looking forward to see what new challenges lay ahead.
Until next time, I will see you in the Tapestry!