My 500 Word Per Day Challenge Update

I began 2014 needing some direction. I knew I wanted to continue writing. But what should I write? What book should I write next? Should I tweak my blog topics?

Then a challenge from Jeff Goins—write 500 words day. Jeff’s challenge was originally for January. But I joined many others who decided to continue the challenge past January.

The challenge sounded easy enough. It really was what I needed to get moving on with my writing goals. So how have I been doing? Overall pretty good I think. Some days very good. Other days not so much.

Here is a simple spreadsheet I used to track my writing. It gives a little insight into what I was writing, how often, how many words, and a few comments along the way.

Download (PDF, 22KB)

Download (PDF, 24KB)

Positive outcomes

I remained consistent with my blogging. I post a blog twice a week, Tuesday and Friday. I began using an editorial calendar a few months ago that has helped me stay on course and topic.

I wrote three devotionals and one guest blog for an orphan care site. Interesting that these opportunities came after I began this challenge.

I began working on my next book. The first step in writing a book, I have learned, is to just begin writing. Writing without editing. Just chunk it down and clean it up later. So, that is what I am doing.

The result was about 20,000 words written in January and February. That is about 1/3 of a book. Not bad!

Room for improvement

Even though I am very proud of getting as much writing done as I did, I want to improve on a few things.

I want to be more consistent. I decided to not write on the weekends as a rule. If everyone is asleep or something, I might write on a weekend. But I want the weekends reserved for family and worship.

So that means I can’t let things derail me during the week. I did great in January. Not so much in February. Looking at my comments, I let a few days slip away without writing new content. For example, last Friday, we drove to Houston to spend some time with family. Well, I needed to spend some time after we got there to write.

Also, I need to learn how to keep writing on my book while researching. It is hard for me to write knowing that I will probably change a lot of it later. But seasoned writers recommend writing this way.

What is ahead

As mentioned above, I want to write more consistently on my book. Which by the way, if you want to get copies of the first drafts of each chapter, then join many others doing the same. All you need to do is sign up for my blog and newsletter to be delivered to your email box. You can find the sign up form at the end of this blog post or on the side bar.

I am creating more content for another orphan care site, too. More info soon to come about that exciting opportunity.

And of course, I will continue to blog here about missional lifestyle.

If you are a writer, I want to hear how your year is going. What do you do to help you stay focused on your writing goals?

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I am a longtime Austinite. Married my beautiful wife over 25 years ago. Adopted our son September 2012. Currently a writer and loving it. Previous jobs and careers include project management, missionary, and pastor. I enjoy sports (both watching and playing), traveling, reading, digging in dirt and hanging with my friends and family.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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