At our first writers meeting of 2011 we decided it would be a good idea to have some goals. As we were all sharing those goals someone mentioned the 'nifty two-fifty'. Of course I, with my dumbfounded look, asked for an explanation. The answer I got was pretty straight forward and simple. Write 250 words everyday. I decided to adopt the 'nifty two-fifty' as one of my goals.
Today was my first attempt, even though I'm three days out from my pledge. However, I did manage 262 words. That's how much I added to my manuscript today. Quite an accomplishment for me considering both my children are home and awake.
This was accomplished after serious negotiations with my 4-year old about computer time, sharing and who got to go first. Finally, I won and programed our timer for 20 minutes. Yep, 20. That's all I got. My 2 year old was taking his afternoon nap.
So, I sat down, spent some time on email, facebook and generally getting comfy. I checked the timer and whoah! Fifteen minutes, twenty-three seconds left on the clock. I better buckle down. I open my word doc and review the last few paragraphs from my previous session. 253 words later the timer dings. My 4-year old excitedly jumps out of his chair where he'd waited ever so patiently thanks to his favorite cartoon.
"My turn Mommy!"
"Just a minute dear," I hold up my hand to stop him "Mommy needs to finish her thought."
A few seconds later I've done my word count, posted my email to the group. Yes, we are holding each other accountable to our self made goals. And my turn was over.
I felt a great sense of accomplishment. It hadn't taken me very long. No real disruption to my daily routine and chores or my family's needs.
That's it. For a 55,000 word novel it would only take me 220 days to finish if I simply wrote 250 each day. And honestly, I have always written more than that when I do sit down. Look at today's count, it was over, even just barely but every bit adds to the whole.
Today I surprised myself. No more excuses, I learned that I definitely have had ample opportunity. Thanks to my ultra-smooth negotiating skills with my little guy I now have time every day. And possibly my own stubborn dictator, since he never misses his daily computer time.