How to Meet Your Daily Word Count Target Day After Day
Last week I wrote about setting a realistic word count target. Today, I wanted to share some tips to help you meet that target day after day.
Setting a daily or weekly target that is attainable is important for us to reach our writing goals. But we also need to set ourselves up so that we’re able to meet our word count target. Just because we set a writing goal or target doesn’t mean we’ll actually achieve it. Life gets in the way or you feel stumped, and before you know it, you’re so far behind that it seems like there’s no hope for ever getting caught up.
While the target is attainable and realistic, writing the actual words is a different story. So, how can you make sure you meet your daily word count target every day? By knowing the story.
One of the best things you can do to stay on top of your daily or weekly word count targets is to know what you’re writing. It isn’t always enough to have a general idea of the story. Sometimes we need things spelled out with a novel map.
The more we know about a novel, the more likely we’ll be able to keep writing and meeting our goal. If there’s an area that stumps us, it’s going to be a challenge to meet our daily word count target, especially if we’re going for quality over quantity like I talked about last week.
When working through your novel development, pay particular attention to these areas…
- Plot Structure
- Story Conflict
- Character Development
- Character Motivation
- Chapter Division/Outline
These areas are ones that, if defined, can help us stay on track of our writing goals.
Here’s how to put this into action:
Every day, spend some time brainstorming what’s going to happen next and what needs to happen in order for the plot to work.
What discoveries does the character need to make and when do those need to occur? How is the story structured (what are your plot points)? What are the internal and external conflicts? What is the setting and what does it look like? How are you going to keep your characters from getting what they want? How do your characters handle the challenge? How do the characters develop throughout the story? What do they want and why do they want it? If it’s important for your story, what is your character wearing and what does the character look like? And what needs to occur in each chapter?
You needn’t know everything. Some things will come out as you write. But if you’re struggling to meet your word count target, you’ll want to spend more time brainstorming the details you need so you can keep moving forward. Brainstorming the details and figuring out your novel plan will help set you up to meeting your daily word count target day after day.