Stephanie Rowe, multipublished author of the Rita-nominated He Loves Me, He Loves Me Hot, the newly released Sex and the Immortal Bad Boy, Must Love Dragons, and Date Me Baby, One More Time, is guesting today over at the Manuscript Mavens blog and, I have to confess, reading her daily page count goal put me pretty much to shame. She shoots for 12 pages per day, 7 days a week. She usually gets more like 18.
And she does it as the mother of a toddler!
My God, when I was the mother of a toddler (actually, I was sometimes the mother of multiple toddlers, but let's forget that whine for the moment), I could scarcely form coherent sentences half the time, much less coherent characters and plots. And I certainly couldn't have written anything sexy, since my idea of bliss at the time was climbing into bed and going to sleep! (Oh, my poor husband. Truly, I feel for him now!)
Even now that my kids are all in school six hours per day and I get an average of eight hours of uninterrupted sleep each night, I still only manage to average about 2 pages per day, 5 days per week. Good Lord, at that pace, I'll finish my first full-length book about the time I'm eligible to collect Social Security (which is coming much faster than I'd like to think!).
True, that "average" over 5 days per week includes days when I don't write anything at all for one reason or another. I do have a full-time job, of course, I'm actively involved in my older son's Cub Scout Pack and my daughter's Brownie troop, I have a house to keep in a minimal state of cleanliness between the housekeeper's weekly visits, and I have a husband and kids who perversely want my attention (and also like it if I feed them regularly). So I have good excuses for my low page count.
But ultimately, they are just excuses. I should be able to write considerably more in the roughly two hours I have each weekday to devote to writing. There's no excuse for writing at the ridiculously slow pace of a page per hour!
As if to create a perfect storm of making me feel utterly inadequate, yesterday saw the beginning of NaNoWriMo. My friend and fellow Cobblestone author, Yolanda Sfetsos, is "playing" and in two days, she wrote over 10,000 words. (A couple of days before that, she finished a 15K word story in two days, picking it up from 1,500 words.)
How is this possible? Are these writers robots? Ultra-caffeinated word-producing ninjas? Inquiring minds want to know!
So, how about you? How many words/pages do you write per day on average? How much time do you devote to writing each day? Do you give yourself a daily goal (whether it's a specific page/word count or a scene count)? If you do, do you usually meet/exceed it, or fall short? (I confess to mostly falling short.) What techniques have you found for helping you meet your daily goal?