Metrics Monday – 3rd March 2014

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The two productive weeks I had planned didn’t really pan out how I expected them. Rather than two weeks of creative productivity I had two weeks of day job shenanigans, a return to marathon training and a time consuming reorganisation of the apartment. Still, 4,016 words isn’t disastrous given that a most of that work was revising and it’s almost 300 words more than last week. The Ghost Smuggler is moving forward although I’m still only around 40% of the way through this draft – I’ve been adding a fair amount of words. That’s well short of my goal of 100% but better than nothing and the book is getting longer and more layered which I think is a good thing. I did make another breakthrough regarding the plot on Sunday. I’ve been searching for a way to reveal a key plot point regarding the main character and I finally settled on an approach while soaking in the bath after my Sunday run. I started writing that scene and it seems to be working. I think that’s the last major sticking point but I’ve revised a lot of the story during this draft so there may be new issues to fix. … Read More

Metrics Monday – 24th February 2014

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Having said that the climate in Vancouver is pretty mild and we don’t get much snow, we’re now well into our third day of snowfall. I live downtown and it still hasn’t really settled on the roads – there’s some slush but not much else – but there is snow on higher ground and outside the city (maybe six inches in Burnaby where I work). The snow was supposed to turn to rain this afternoon but it didn’t so we’ll have to see what happens tomorrow. I’ve got a physio session in the morning but then I’ll probably take transit to work, it’s generally quicker and safer when there’s snow around. Anyway, word metrics. A disappointing 3,737 on The Ghost Smuggler last week. The slow progress is really down to the fact that I’m revising which means there’s not a lot of new words but still, I’d hoped to get further. I lost a few hours on Saturday because I was attending the WANACon online writing conference. I took part in five sessions including Mercedes M Yardley’s session on Writing in Stolen Moments and a very timely session on revision by Gabriela Periera and Julie Duffy. I missed the first day but … Read More

Metrics Monday – 17th February 2014

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Last week was pretty solid, 4,622 words. I did do a quick bit of work on the outline for the Diary project but otherwise the bulk of that came from a couple of chapters of The Ghost Smuggler that I’m rewriting completely. The next two weeks should be pretty productive. My wife is away in England so I won’t be distracted by TV, movies or theatre. Assuming I can stay away from the Titanfall beta (I’m not a big fan of first person shooters but Titanfall is a lot of fun), I should be able to get a fair amount of work done on The Ghost Smuggler. My goal is to get a second draft finished so that my wife can read it when she gets back. That won’t necessarily mean big word counts because a lot of the work I need to do is revising what’s already there but there are a few chapters that I’m completely rewriting and some completely new content. I’m pretty happy with the way it’s going at the moment but I keep coming up with ideas that a) make the book better b) require me to go back and add to chapters I’ve already revised. At this … Read More

Metrics Monday – 10th February 2014

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Work got in the way of writing in a dramatic fashion this week – we have a new title coming out on the 25th of February and there was some final troubleshooting to do. In fact, I wasn’t sure I’d even make it past 2,000 words until I made a concerted effort yesterday afternoon and added 1,875 words in one sitting. The first three days were spent on revisions of The Ghost Smuggler, tiny sessions crammed into what little time I could find. By Thursday I was struggling to find any time to work in Scrivener at all so I switched tracks and started a new project, codename Diary. It’s a project I thought of a few months ago but decided not to write. On Friday, I decided to use it as filler to keep my writing streak going until I could get time work on The Ghost Smuggler – more like practice than an actual story intended for publication. But then something interesting happened. Ethel the Muse began working her magic and my practice story became something I’m considering writing as my next project. It’s even changed tone a little bit. It started off as fairly humorous (and will probably stay that way) … Read More

Metrics Monday – 3rd February 2014

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I know, I know. Nothing but metrics every week. Very boring. In my defence I do have a post on our Bahamas trip in the drafts folder, I just need to find time to get it finished. My lack of time is reflected in a) the lateness of this post and b) the crappy word count. A feeble 2,939 words last week – all revisions to The Ghost Smuggler. I’ve been swamped at work and I think that’s the lowest weekly word count I’ve managed since I started my writing streak. Over half of that word count came in over the weekend. Unfortunately, my day job is still taking up a lot of time and this week is going to set a new low. [Metrics Monday – 3rd February 2014 by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 9th February 2014]  

Metrics Monday – 27th January 2014

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I owe the blog a post about our trip to the Bahamas and on my 200 day writing record but the day job is getting in the way at the moment. Maybe tomorrow. In the meantime, here’s some more belated metrics. A total of 4023 words for the week. It would have been higher but Saturday’s writing session was interrupted by a fire alarm (false) and on Sunday I returned to revisions of The Ghost Smuggler which naturally leads to lower word counts. I’m expecting a low word count for the next few weeks for that reason and this week is already shaping up to be far less productive (as far as pure number of words goes anyway). [Metrics Monday – 27th January 2014 by Philip Harris was first published on Solitary Mindset on 29th January 2014]  

Metrics Monday – 20th January 2014

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Very late metrics, we’ve been on holiday in the Bahamas so no blogging for me. But I did get some fiction writing done which helped me hit 4,666 words for the week. The first three days were spent on revisions to The Ghost Smuggler. I’m doing those in Scrivener though so I couldn’t continue with that while I was away. Instead, I started work on a new novel. It doesn’t have a title yet but it has zombies in it. I really only started on it because I needed something new to work on while I was away. I don’t have an outline for it I’ll be putting it aside now I’m back in Canada to continue the revisions of The Ghost Smuggler but I like the concept so I’ll definitely be coming back to it, probably after I’ve finished revising Glitch. [Metrics Monday – 20th January 2014 by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 26th January 2014]

Metrics Monday – 13th January 2014

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A pretty good word count for the first full week of the year – 4,345. Most of the writing was the revisions to The Ghost Smuggler which are going well. I’m currently about 18% through the second draft. This one is focused on fixing structural problems. I’m reading the whole thing as I write and fixing and improving as I go but there will be a third draft purely focused on wordsmithery. Once that’s done, I’ll be giving it to my wife to get her feedback. As well as The Ghost Smuggler, I did the final, final edits to a story called Twelve Things You Need to Know About Merfolk and also tinkered with the opening chapter of a new novel. I’m not ready to start writing it but the idea has been gnawing at me for a while and I needed something to work on to keep up my streak (currently sitting at 197 days). I didn’t have a chance to work at home on my PC so I needed something that didn’t need Scrivener. We’re going to be away on vacation from Wednesday. We’re travelling to the Bahamas for a marathon. Unfortunately, I’m injured so I will be relegated to Chief … Read More

Metrics Monday – 6th January 2014

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A pretty good week to finish/start the year – 5943 words – although it’s somewhat misleading because about 1,400 of those were part of an outline which are generally stream of consciousness ramblings and notes, rather than actual writing. Because that feels a bit like cheating I’ve been making sure I write some actual words of fiction as well as the outlines. Writing last week was a mix of Glitch, The Ghost Smuggler and a new, as yet untitled, story. The problem with the new story is that it’s now sitting at 3,339 words and I’ve barely started it. Which means, it’s either novella or maybe even a novel. That wouldn’t be a problem but I’m not sure the idea warrants that much space. I like what I’ve written so far so I’m going to poke around at the outline a bit and see if I think there’s enough ideas there. I also began outlining a new novel yesterday. I’m not satisfied enough to start writing it yet, but it’s good to start getting my thoughts down. I’ve got a decision to make regarding the next few weeks. The original plan was to work on the second draft of The Ghost Smuggler … Read More

Vital Statistics 2013

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However you measure it, 2013 was my most productive year in the 20 odd years I’ve been dabbling with this writing malarkey. Here’s the stats for last year (numbers in brackets are for 2012) Stories sold: 7 (5) Writing time:  265.5 hours (64.2) Total word count : 169,080 (34,520) Short story word count:  39,683 (3,945) Average words per hour:   726 (626) Average words per day (full year): 463 (94) Days of writing:  251 (48) Average words per day of writing:   674 (719) First drafts completed: Short Stories 16 (3) First drafts completed: Novels 2 (0) Final drafts completed: Short Stories 14 (8) New submissions: 64  (50) New markets submitted to:  33 (21) Submissions still outstanding: 5 Blog posts:  107 (56) Lots of good numbers there, starting with the total words written – just over 169,000 words. That’s my most productive year so far. The only year that comes close was 2010 when I wrote the original version of The Ghost Smuggler and it’s still almost 50,000 words more than I managed that year. Those words took me 11 days 1 hour 30 minutes to write – another record breaking year. Those numbers look even better in light of this … Read More