Minding The Bees


A little over three months days ago, I decided it was time to stop procrastinating, and begin making writing a regular part of my life, a given, a habit not easily broken, like sleeping, eating, reading, and bodily functions not normally mentioned in polite company.

My approach was to demand of myself that I write (edit, outline, translate, critique) every single day, but that 100 words a day suffice (increased later to 150). The objective was to ingrain writing into my system, so that writing at least a little bit every day becomes the norm, and not writing begins to feel like not eating, or not sleeping: entirely possible, but decidedly uncomfortable.

Today, 100 days later, thanks to Beeminder, I’ve written:

  • 10008 words of brand new prose;
  • 9017 words’ worth of editing (tallying my editing at a 5:1 ratio or less);
  • 2911 words of critique (of three stories by other authors);
  • 2524 words of translation;
  • 2178 words of outline;
  • or, by the tallying method declared on my Beeminder Goal page, 24460 words in all.

These words were used to:

  • write of an outline for my Broken World novel;
  • get my fantasy story The Allocution of Bob Hayward ready for submission;
  • critique 9 stories by other authors;
  • first write, then edit the first six drafts, then finalize for submission my Paul Harland Prize story;
  • begin the translation of said story into English;
  • write two teaser scenes for an exciting collaborative reading project;
  • write a spontaneous new 2000 word dialogue-only science fiction story;
  • and assorted writing, editing, and translation odds and ends.

In other words: if you’re a writer struggling to get any writing done, I highly recommend this! A 100 words is such an easy target that you can always find the 10-15 minutes you need.

Next goal: keeping this up for a year. I’ll let you know how that worked out on my 46th birthday…