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Dropping the 1000 words a day challenge

I'm starting to stress over it too much. I had a zero day yesterday. Or on the fourth, depending on how you look at it when I wrote the article that counted at one in the morning on the fifth.

I slept, a lot, around the clock. I read a Terry Pratchett novel without putting it down. I didn't do anything.

I needed to not do anything because I accomplished a whole lot at a heavy, immersive pace. I like that. I do well in that kind of thing. But I can't sustain it without actual deep breaks in between.

I also had five days in November where I got zero count. Not bad. Means the weather was half decent for it. Some years I get a lot more sick days than that.

I've been stressing too much about time and deadlines and everything I want to get done in December. Including some art goals, like finishing Estemmenosuchus and participating in the Pastel Strokes event that I'm hosting. Art days aren't always writing days. I can count on doing one thing in a day, whether it's a half hour thing or a ten or twelve hour thing depending on the day.

So trying to pace myself to any "every day" habit is a recipe for disaster. It only means sooner or later I will reach this point of exhaustion where I'd have to force it. I've done that sometimes at other times in my life and paid the price, sometimes for years as with the typesetting job.

Writing isn't something I can do like that, just showing up for it isn't enough. Instead, I need to get so much done on my good days that the days I lose don't matter, that overall I average more than a thousand words a day. Which I do. An easy sustainable chapter a day pace still gets me five thousand word days.

So I'm going to let that go in favor of returning to project-based goals.

If I don't manage to finish reading through Curse of Vaumuru in under 24 hours then it takes as long as it does. I'll keep going once I do, head into the new ending and get that done. But the thousand-word challenge actually interfered with that because I know I've taken longer than a day to reread my own fiction, especially when I may be line editing during the process. Sure, it could count. But it still choked me -- and if something isn't helping, I'd better stick with what works.
Explore-Oil-Pastels-With-Robert-Sloan.com Articles at eHow.com, ETSY shop, My Bonanzle Booth, deviantART gallery, SFFmuse and look for art by robertsloan2art on eBay. Listed on Art Blogs 4 U
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Robert A. Sloan, author of Raven Dance

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