||[Nov. 14th, 2004|06:40 pm]
Last of the Wine (After the day's writing is done)
|||||I Choose -- The Offspring -- Ixnay On The Hombre||]|
if i wasn't such a weenie
would you still love me?
(from 'now playing' song)
Was feeling really unmotivated and unproductive (and it wasn't until later that I noticed the scene I'd mentally dismissed as being 'short', i.e. 1000ish words, was actually over 4000-- but doesn't go anywhere and i won't use it in the final version: mixed blessing), so I decided, since I'm keeping rigorous track of my wordcount, that I'd do some Excel-ing of it all and see if I could blind myself with science, as the kids say.
Now, I am not an Excel whiz. Nor can I do math. Or, for that matter, count.
But, with some help from Dave (who can actually count in his head rather than on his fingers), I made a spreadsheet with my wordcount totals by excerpt posted. Each time I've posted an excerpt to my novel journal I've stated the length of the excerpt and the cumulative total. Sometimes I post an excerpt when i've already started writing the next scene, so the next scene gets posted quite quickly afterwards and is very long-- I didn't write the whole thing in the intervening time, and the cumulative wordcount total shows that. (Sometimes it's not until I've started the next scene that I realize there was a scene break. Sometimes I just get into it. Sometimes, I just forget.) And, of course, Livejournal logs what time I made the post. Thus: a record of my progress.
So, I (this was way hard, but I suffer for the science of my art) made graphs of both of those: length of excerpts posted, by hour, and then the other one is cumulative wordcount by hour.
I'm not posting those behind a cut, because they're optimized .gif files so they're quite small.
(To give a time frame, we're about 330.5 hours into NaNoWriMo right now.)
This is a graph showing each of the excerpts I posted. The horizontal axis is the number of hours elapsed since the beginning of NaNoWriMo. The vertical axis is the length, in words, of the excerpt.
This graph shows my total wordcount. The horizontal axis is, again, hours elapsed. The vertical axis is total words.
There are discrepancies; the individual excerpts, I counted the words using the text editor BBEdit, which is consistently about 3% higher. The cumulative, I kept track of in Microsoft Word, which counts lower. I think BBEdit gets thrown off by quotation marks and the such-- it's primarily intended as a code editor and i use it mostly for HTML and things when I want to put something up without weird Word gremlins (special characters gone wrong) in it.
I don't know what these graphs show in particular, except that I've had some extremely bad days and some extremely good ones. The journal is interesting to reread because the days I thought were bad aren't always the ones that were.
I've gotten very little sleep this month, as well, so that might affect it-- next time I do this, I'm also going to journal the # of hours I sleep.
I'm interested to see if there are any patterns about when I'm most productive and what sorts of conditions are optimal. Often I do my best and most intense work when sleep-deprived... but then again, that's also when I waste the most time just staring at nothing and feeling wretched. So... Learning.
Is anyone else doing anything so anal, or do you all have better methods? I know there were various spreadsheets being bandied about but I just... did my own thing, I guess, for better or worse.