This morning I remembered something my friend and colleague Neal Shusterman, who writes YA novels and does quite well at it, said some years back. It was either when we were in Fictionaires together (an Orange County-based writing group where I also got to know T. Jefferson Parker, Elizabeth George, Jo-Ann Mapson, Maureen Taylor Smith, and Don Stanwood), or during an interview when he was on Writers on Writing, or for an article I wrote for Poets & Writers, but he said rather than writing a number of words or pages during any given day, he had a number he had to reach for the week. So if one day he wrote one, and another day, two, the next day he might write eight, to make up for not writing much previous days. Lately I’ve been doing just that.
For me, the number per day, five days a week, is four pages. So every week, I need to write 20 pages of the novel I started a little more than two months ago. I’m up to page 200. I’m aiming for 240.
If you’re having trouble with a certain number of words or pages a day, give this a try. A certain number every week offers a certain flexibility and latitude that works for writers like me, and maybe