A Question For Fellow Writers

One thing that is suggested by many writers who I hold in high esteem (Chuck Wendig, Kristen Lamb, etc.), is to set wordcount goals and plan out the length of your chapters and stories. This is something I just can’t seem to get. See that little sidebar over there? The one with the WIPs and the progress bars? Yeah, that’s total bullshit. I have no idea how long my stories are going to be until they’re in first-draft mode. None. And I don’t know how to fix that. So I am turning to you, dear internet, for your help. How do you do it? How do you know ahead of time how many words will fit into that first-time pegging scene? How long is a smutty retelling of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs? How many chapters is that time-travel steampunk faerie/shifter romance going to be? How the fuck do you know these things ahead of time?

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One response to “A Question For Fellow Writers

  1. Word count in fiction was super tough for me until I understood story structure. I recommend Les Edgerton’s “Hooked,” JSB’s “Plot and Structure” and Larry Brooks’ “Story Engineering.” Once I understood what each scene or sequel needed to accomplish, it became easier to know what the hell I was doing and where I was going. Without knowing that, you end up padding with fluff, lost and have a stack of stuff unfinished. So read books, read craft books and then just keep writing. We have to practice. I have written WAY more crap than gold, LOL.

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