Word count vs completion goal – UPDATED – 29/03/19

My first attempt at writing a fiction novel

I started writing my novel at the end of October 2018, setting an arbitrary goal of a 50,000 word count. I’d thought I’d need something to work towards so that I didn’t give up after 5,000 words or when I lost momentum. I also set a date to achieve this by, and the fact that I am two days off is sheer coincidence. I soon realised that I didn’t need a word count target. This story needs to be told and I will persevere to completion.

Exploring themes and ideas through the eyes of the protagonist.

The novel is centred around the life of a boy, as he grows to a man, mainly based in Auckland. He is born in the early 1950s and the story picks up when he is nine years old in the early 60s. The main character is now at a really exciting point in his life and the story is more than halfway through. I have finally worked out a peak plot point for the story. This is where all of his lessons, experiences, talents and interests that have been established so far will all amount to something.

I’m still enjoying seeing how the characters and storylines develop. As I’m writing my novel it feels as though it’s all being revealed to me, rather than actually coming out of my own brain. It’s a weird feeling but it keeps things exciting!

Thank you to everyone who has been supporting and encouraging me.

So many of you are wanting to read it, which means the world to me. However, I can’t promise that it’s actually good! All I know is that it’s the kind of book I’d like to read myself. I feel humbled by everyone’s interest and encouragement. I’m also grateful to those who have read early drafts, contributed to ideas, been sounding boards to my enthusiasm, and corrected typos (which I must say I believe are pretty minimal!).

I can’t wait to share the final product with you all!

Word count vs completion goal – 27/01/19

Novel progress! I set a target of a 50,000 word count, thinking that it was barely achievable for me. In three months I’ve reached halfway to the target but the story is only just beginning. I will be moving the goalposts for sure.

word count novel progress

The word count is no longer the goal. Writing my novel will be a completion goal.

The genre is mainstream fiction, centred around an individual and his relationships with interesting peripheral characters. It’s set mostly in the 20th century and based in New Zealand.

It’s really exciting for me to see how this story develops. I’ve outlined the entire book from start to finish, but the characters are revealing themselves to me on a journey of their own.

I’m loving creative writing more than I ever thought I would. I can’t get the story down fast enough. I am currently exploring emotions from a totally different perspective, through the lens of the main character:

Compassion, fear, belonging, loss, joy, anxiety.

I generally like to align with a theme of the year, or goals that are measurable (hence the word count) but, for this novel, it’s more important to me to reach completion and tell the story that is in my heart. Thank you for the support and encouragement I have received so far. I can’t wait for you all to read my book!

To anyone that is considering taking on a creative venture, or is limited by their own beliefs, please, just START. You might surprise yourself.

I’m using the writing app Ulysses for Mac to write my novel. It’s great for managing multiple chapters/parts. The UI is easy to view for free-flow writing. There are many features and tools for sorting and formatting text, as well as tracking stats. I have also been able to manage a large amount of research, resources and notes within the app for super-quick reference.