I got in a long conversation with my roommate tonight, where we talked about girls, government, the economy, 2010 elections, corporatism, Ursula K. Le Guin, and all other kinds of good stuff. Towards the end, we got to talking about my goals to be a full time writer, and I showed him the record I’ve been keeping of my daily word counts.
In case you’re interested in seeing a copy of it, here it is:
I basically showed him how I’ve been keeping track of my work, setting and keeping goals on a daily basis, juggling work, school, etc while taking a very professional approach to my writing. While it impressed him, it impressed me almost more–all of this is so habitual by now that I sometimes forget how hard I’ve been working at it.
The most surprising thing? Since May 2009, I have written over 422,000 words!
There’s a saying in writing that says you have to write one million words before you write your first good word. Until now, I thought I was still somewhat short of that number–on the upper end, certainly, but still short.
Well, I’ve been writing on a more or less daily basis since August 2007. If I’ve written almost half a million words since May 2009, how many words did I write between August 2007 and May 2009? At least half a million, I’m willing to guess!
In other words, it is quite possible that I’ve already surpassed my millionth word.
I’m not sure what to think about that. On the one hand, it’s exciting. On the other hand, it’s downright scary. If it’s true, it means that I should move past the apprenticeship phase and start pushing this as my career.
That is insanely scary–and yet, at the same time, absolutely thrilling. It’s going to mean investing a lot more time into researching the market and sending out to agents, receiving lots of rejections and wondering if my stories are any good.
Scary. And yet, when I finally do get a publishing deal (and I’m more confident now than ever that this will actually happen someday–inshallah someday soon), that’s when it gets really scary. If that first book doesn’t earn out, my career will be toast. I’ll have to slave away in an office for the rest of my life.
Holy crap, that’s scary. At the same time, though, it’s gonna be awesome.
Bring it on!