1,000 words

Back when I first got into book writing, Jon Wertheim—SI colleague and longtime friend—offered sound advice: “Shoot for 1,000 words per day.” It sounds easy enough. Sit down, write 1,000 words, move on.

It’s haaaaaard.

First 1,000 written words aren’t always 1,000 quality written words. Second, life offers too many distractions. Food. TV. Loud people. Food. TV. Dog. Food. TV.

Second the great challenge of a book—a detailed, in-depth book—is returning to the same subject day after day after day after day. Sometimes I wake up eager to write. Other days it’s an enormous, 100,000-pound slog through hell. I can’t stand another moment … just wanna be done.

But then you bounce back. How? By reminding yourself it’s just 1,000 words.

Just 1,000 words.

7 thoughts on “1,000 words”

  1. 1000 words a day is hellish. Back when I was in my graduate writing program, we heard that Steven King would write ten pages each and every day except Christmas. Just imagine, every day, no matter how you feel, if you’re in a bad mood, or under the weather or just had a fight with the wife….writing the 1000 words. it’s hard, man.

  2. Ive had days where I can knock out 800 words in a half hour…ok actually, I knocked out 800 in a half hour this one time and thought I was a golden God. But most days you battle to get 500.

    My thing is distraction, theres always something more appealing to do then fight with yourself to meet your quota.

    Jonathan Franzen said in Time last month that he isolates himself from distractions like the internet, going so far as to jam his airport card port. I like to imagine that I’d do that if only I didnt need the net for research…yeah…research.

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