Writing Tips: How Quickly We Write

By Cynthia Sax on October 25, 2017


It is almost November, which means it is almost time for National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo, a challenge for writers to write 50,000 fresh words in a month. Some writing buddies won’t ‘win’ this challenge (like me – I have NEVER won NaNoWriMo). Some writing buddies will ‘win’ this challenge in the first two days.

Is Faster Better?

There’s a perception in Writingland that faster is better. I agree. Faster IS better. The faster we complete a story we’re proud to share with readers, the sooner those readers can enjoy the story and we can focus on another story.

Notice this is COMPLETING a story we’re PROUD to share.

It isn’t writing speed. Writing speed means very little. I write a first draft of a 56,000 word story in a month. It takes me another month to revise it (six rounds, at the minimum). If you write a first draft of a 56,000 word story in two months and it’s clean, ready for readers, your speed to complete a story you’re proud to share is the same as mine.

Talk during NaNoWriMo normally revolves around writing speed. Don’t compare yourself against others for this (or, IMHO, any other aspect of writing). Compare against yourself. Can you complete the same quality of first draft in less days? Great.

Or maybe not-so-great. If you burn out and then you have to take more time off than you usually do, that’s not a ‘win.’ Again, it is about how long it takes us to complete a story we’re proud to share with readers.


Pacing Ourselves

My most efficient pace is writing 2,500 new words a day Monday to Friday and then taking the weekend off (to do things like write blog posts, respond to messages, fill out cover/formatting forms, etc).

But-But-But wouldn’t I complete the story faster if I wrote EVERY day?

Nope. If I tried to write every day, with no breaks, I would burn out and then have to take MORE time off than 2 days after 5 days writing. This also happens when I binge write. If I write 5,000 new words in a day, I’m usually burned out for three days after that. I find it more challenging to get back into the story after that ‘break.’

So I force myself to quit at 2,500 words every day and to take the weekends off. This is what works for me. Some of my writing buddies binge write. They NEED to write the entire story in mere days. That works for them. Others NEED to write every day. That is their optimal schedule.

The NaNoWriMo system will give you a target word count to meet every day. This is merely the number of words you have left to write to hit 50,000 words divided by the number of days you have left in November. It is a guideline, not what you SHOULD do.

If you’re just starting out on this wonderful writing journey and you haven’t yet found your optimal schedule, consider trying the system schedule. If it doesn’t work, try something else. It took me years to figure out my schedule. It took some fortunate writing buddies one shot. When you find your groove, stick to it until it no longer works for you.

Writing buddies, have you found your optimal writing schedule? What is it?

Note: Even though I never win NaNoWriMo and I stick to my optimal schedule, I still participate in it. I love the daily emails and the party aspect of it. There are so few group activities for writers. NaNoWriMo is one of those.

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Seeking Vector

A cyborg with a secret… A female seeking the truth…

Vector, the C Model captain of the Freedom, is a cyborg many warriors wish to emulate. He fights fiercely, leads with honor, has earned the respect and loyalty of his crew. But no being, not even a cyborg, is perfect. Since arriving at the Homeland, Vector has been hiding a dark truth about his past. If his secret is exposed, he could lose everything – his position, his ship, and his life.

Kasia excels at uncovering secrets. Half a lifespan ago, her curiosity placed her on the Humanoid Alliance’s kill list. Now she has accessed information the cyborg council would prefer remain hidden. Their warriors are hunting her and won’t rest until she’s dead.

When Vector arrives on her battle station, all grim determination, gray skin, and bulging muscles, Kasia knows he has been sent to kill her. That doesn’t stop her from wanting the dominant cyborg. She senses the savage nature under the male’s controlled exterior, sees the mysteries in his brilliant blue eyes, craves the roughness of his touch. She will risk all she has to experience his embrace.

Kasia braved the cyborg council’s ire for a reason. If she doesn’t convince Vector to act on the information she uncovered, the enemy could destroy his home planet and render every cyborg in the universe immobile.

Can a doubting C Model warrior learn to trust and to love before it is too late?

Seeking Vector is Book 10 in the Cyborg Sizzle series and is a STAND-ALONE story.
It is also a Cyborg SciFi Romance.

Buy Now:

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Seeking-Vector-Cyborg-Sizzle-Book-ebook/dp/B075FHBW87/

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Seeking-Vector-Cyborg-Sizzle-Book-ebook/dp/B075FHBW87/

Apple/iBooks/iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/seeking-vector/id1280185990

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/seeking-vector-cynthia-sax/1127072529

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/seeking-vector

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/746717

Topics: Writing Tips | No Comments »

Releasing Rage And My Top Writing Tip

By Cynthia Sax on November 4, 2015

The always awesome Nicola Cameron asked me what my top writing tip was.

http://nicolacameronwrites.com/2015/11/04/wicked-wednesday-reads-releasing-rage/

Write balls to the wall.

Get your mind out of the gutter. (grins) That saying refers to cannonballs, though I suppose it could apply to other kinds of balls also. What it means is to write that first draft all out, no filters, no thinking ‘will my agent, editor, reviewers, readers like this?’ or ‘is this sellable?’ Dump everything on the page—your words, your heart, your guts.

***

Subscribe To My Release Day Newsletter: http://tasteofcyn.com/2014/05/28/newsletter/

Half Man. Half Machine. All Hers.

Rage, the Humanoid Alliance’s most primitive cyborg, has two goals—kill all of the humans on his battle station and escape to the Homeland. The warrior has seen the darkness in others and in himself. He believes that’s all he’s been programmed to experience.
Until he meets Joan.

Joan, the battle station’s first female engineer, has one goal—survive long enough to help the big sexy cyborg plotting to kill her. Rage might not trust her but he wants her. She sees the passion in his eyes, the caring in his battle-worn hands, the gruff emotion in his voice.

When Joan survives the unthinkable, Rage’s priorities are tested. Is there enough room in this cyborg’s heart for both love and revenge?

Buy Now:
On Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Releasing-Rage-Cyborg-Sizzle-Book-ebook/dp/B00ZOL1DRO

On ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-releasingrage-1850041-340.html

On B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/releasing-rage-cynthia-sax/1122455646

Topics: Guest Post | No Comments »

Releasing Rage, NaNoWriMo and Kick Starting The Muse

By Cynthia Sax on October 19, 2015

What do you do to kick start the muse? #NaNoWriMo #Writingtips

I’ll often change where I physically am.

I’m talking about that today on Tara Quan’s online home

http://www.taraquan.com/blog/cs

Here’s a snippet…

Tara and I both love to travel. (hugs Tara) For me, there’s nothing more inspiring, more likely to kick start the muse than a different neighborhood, city, country.

When Rage and his cyborg brethren in Releasing Rage were escaping the Humanoid Alliance, traveling through space to get to the Homeland, I pictured the time the hubby and I took a commercial flight during a meteor shower.

When the cyborgs were restricted to the battle station, I recalled how I felt when we took a transatlantic cruise. We were confined to a vessel in the middle of an ocean. We couldn’t leave even if we wanted to. We saw the same faces every day. We were on the captain’s timetable, at his mercy.

***

Subscribe To My Release Day Newsletter: http://tasteofcyn.com/2014/05/28/newsletter/

Half Man. Half Machine. All Hers.

Rage, the Humanoid Alliance’s most primitive cyborg, has two goals—kill all of the humans on his battle station and escape to the Homeland. The warrior has seen the darkness in others and in himself. He believes that’s all he’s been programmed to experience.
Until he meets Joan.

Joan, the battle station’s first female engineer, has one goal—survive long enough to help the big sexy cyborg plotting to kill her. Rage might not trust her but he wants her. She sees the passion in his eyes, the caring in his battle-worn hands, the gruff emotion in his voice.

When Joan survives the unthinkable, Rage’s priorities are tested. Is there enough room in this cyborg’s heart for both love and revenge?

Buy Now:
On Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Releasing-Rage-Cyborg-Sizzle-Book-ebook/dp/B00ZOL1DRO

On ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-releasingrage-1850041-340.html

On B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/releasing-rage-cynthia-sax/1122455646

Topics: Guest Post | No Comments »