Tuesday, January 06, 2009


Annual Output

Customarily, on the last day of the year, I post a little something about my annual output. Last week I was away from the internets on New Years Eve and for a few days after, so you'll have to excuse me for running a bit late.

This last year was a strange one. It felt as though I was busy all the time, but that I wasn't getting much work done. I have to go back and check out my productivity chart (a text file that I use to track work completed, revised, etc) to see that I actually was getting stuff done, it just wasn't the kind of "stuff" I was used to.

In years past, I've only counted new words written. New words of prose, that is. I'll start by measuring 2008 with that yardstick.

As a basis for comparison, here's my total output for the last three years (in the first two of which I was only able to work part-time at best).
2005: 158,985
2006: 169,800
2007: 441,666

Three Unbroken (2nd and 3rd thirds) 54,950
Dawn of War II 91,634

"Edison's Frankenstein" 7,193
"His Majesty's Menagerie" 2,314
"Gauntlet Run" 8,001
"Mirror of Fiery Brightness" 15,823

Total new words written in 2008: 179,915

At first glance, it looks as though I did less than half as much work as in the previous year, on par with the years in which I was only writing part time.

But then I remember all of that other stuff I did. Not counting the revisions I did to several novels under submission, all of which are difficult to quantify in a strict wordcount (the new revision might have the same or fewer words than the previous version, but they're not the same words), there's all that comics stuff I did.

Here are the entries from my productivity chart for just two weeks in October, for example.
10/03/08 Cinderella #1 - revision
10/03/08 Cinderella #3 - complete
10/03/08 "Firewalk" - proposal
10/14/08 Cinderella #4 - complete
10/16/08 Cinderella #1 - revision
In 2008 I wrote eight 22-page comic scripts (plus a 7-page short, about which the less said the better). These scripts tended to average anywhere between five thousand and seven thousand words, altogether. Taken on the basis of strict wordcount (dialogue, captions, scene and panel descriptions, etc) they amount to another 57,549 words. I could revise my total wordcount for the year to 237,464, I suppose, but it seems like cheating somehow.

(What's "Firewalk," you might ask? Mmm. Good question.)

Either way, though, I did get work done last year. About a quarter of a million words, of one kind or another. I wrote one and two-thirds novels, a handful of short stories, and more than half-a-dozen comics. (And shepherded another couple of MonkeyBrain titles out the door, while I was at it.) I didn't write as much this last year as I did the previous year, but to be honest I'm not sure that I want to write as much as I did in 2007 every year. I may stick here at a quarter-million-words for a few years, see how that feels.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by 

Blogger. Isn't yours?