May 2014 Writing by the Numbers

May turned out to be one of my best months since last summer. I wrote 35,500 words of fiction, which comes to an average of about 1,150 words/day. For me, that is an average of about 45 minutes of writing every day. Only 10 of the 31 days in May were less than 1,000 words. My best day was May 23, when I wrote over 2,800 words. My lowest word count day for the month came on May 25, when I wrote 605 words–and even that came when I was out of town with the family. Here is what May 2014 looked like:

May 2014 Writing

All that said, I still struggled with the novel draft all month long. I restarted the draft 12 times, so that my usable copy for the second draft is far less than the 35,000 words I wrote. I’m still pleased that I pushed through and didn’t allow the difficulties to stop me from writing. I sat at the keyboard every day, whether I was struggling or not, and wrote, trying to produce the best possible story I could manage.

My consecutive-day writing streak remains in tact. As of yesterday (June 1), I have written for 315 consecutive days. 50 more days and I will hit a year without missing a day. All told, I’ve written 458 out of the last 460 days.

I set a new personal record in May as well. My main goal is to write every day without fail, but also without too much concern of how much I write. A secondary goal is to try to get in 500 words/day if I can manage that. During May, I broke my previous record of 33 consecutive days of exceeding that 500 words/day goal. As of yesterday, I’ve now written at least 500 words/day for the last 44 days.

All of this fiction writing has taken some small toll on my blogging. I wrote a total of 19,000 words worth of blog posts in May, and on 5 days in May, I didn’t write any posts at all! If you combine my fiction writing and blogging in May, I wrote of 55,000 words and averaged about 1,700 words/day. Here is what the combined writing looks like:

May 2014 Writing Blogging

In June, I’m hoping to overcome the struggles on the novel and press forward. We’ll see how things go.


  1. You know what? This is turning out inspiring. I’m sure it’s not only me who is in an earlier stage on the writing adventure, and having the opportunity to witness how you are overcoming it, will turn out helpful.
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. I agree with Sergio…very inspiring. I’ve upped my own word counts, and I love to see these types of posts from you. When I have a busy or long day, and I don’t feel like writing, I think to myself, “Jamie’s finding a way to squeeze in some time, so can I!”

    1. Melanie and Sergio, I’m so glad you find these posts helpful. One thing I’ve learned is that it is pretty easy to squeeze writing in on the days that are routine, even if they are busy. The trick is to plan ahead on the days that divert from the routine. For instance, tonight we are going to a friend’s house for dinner, which throws off the routine. I’ll be sacrificing some of my lunch time walking today to get in my quote, just in case I’m too tired after we get home from the dinner. As long as I plan ahead on things like that, it’s pretty easy for me, once I’ve established that initial routine.

      1. Such a good point, Jamie. My most difficult days are those when I’m off my “schedule”. When I’m having a normal day, the writing is slotted into the routine and I complete it without difficulty. It’s the times when I’m going out to dinner or my schedule is altered in some way that I miss getting my words down on paper.


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