Write a Novel

This is just as an addendum to yesterday’s post. The reason why I was talking about time allocation and routines is because I want to write a novel. So here’s the math for a 50,000 word novel for Nanowrimo or National Novel Writing Month:

50,000 words really isn’t that large a novel. Assuming 300 words per page it comes out to about 167 pages. So it isn’t anywhere near some of those Russian behemoths that people either love or could leave resting on a shelf, but it is still a substantial amount of writing for a single month.

November is 30 days, and for one of my friends, yes the Thanksgiving is on Thursday this year. But that brings up a valid point. If I was to write every day then I would need to write about 1667 words every day. Yes I rounded the number in both cases if you are keeping track of the math. But I won’t. Even with a routine I will need to write less some days and possibly not write at all others, such as the one that requires a bit of cooking.

But let’s see what amount of time I would have to set aside every day to write 1667 words in a day. As I am writing this I am flowing pretty freely, even with the math, and am writing about 1200 words in an hour. My typing speed is not so great, but i just saw that I might be able to voice-type with Google Docs. It might be an editing nightmare, but maybe I can learn to speak faster than I can type, probably at this point.

All of that aside, it means that 1700 words a day is going to take me just under an hour and a half. Time I must set aside every day. Pretty unrealistic, maybe I can dictate in the car… That would give me about an hour on the commute and the transcript from a crash would be pretty hilarious, except for me, my body, and my wallet. So what if I put in two to three hours on the weekend days and then a lighter load on the weekdays.

There are nine weekend days. If I just wrote on the weekends that would put me at a bit over 5,000 words per day, meaning around four to five hours of writing. Oof. Not the way I really want to spend my weekend if the weather is as nice as it has been these last two weeks. Also it cuts out on the routine and starts stinking of inspiration, which in itself is not a bad word but fails me at critical points.

Alright, let’s figure out an hour count for the month, and give it 20% padding. 50 hours. If I take 2.5 hours every weekend day then that gets us to 27.5 more hours to distribute throughout the rest of the month, which isn’t much of a reduction, and still means if I miss a day I will have to make up quite a bit of time.

I probably need to approach 3 to 4 hours on the weekend days and keep writing on the weekdays to my dictation experiments in the car and hopefully up to an hour otherwise.

Are you interested in writing novels? How would you approach writing 50k words in a month?

Oh yeah, this was way more math than the last post that I named “Doing Math.”


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