I’m struggling to find an appropriate metric to evaluate my progress on this project at the moment, so let’s just deal with raw figures.
I have 93 pages of completed (revised) manuscript. Currently that equates to about 30,000 words (I’m being really rough here).
The total word-count on the document is 197,698 words. That means I only have 167,698 ish words to revise in the next five weeks (when Genrecon arrives).
That’s the road ahead. The road behind though is a little more encouraging: that 197,698 figure is down from 240,141. If my maths is not mistaken (by which I mean my ability to operate the calculator app on my phone) I’ve cut 42,443 words. That’s a good chunk of writing gone. The original Word page count was 766. Now it’s 638. I’ve cut out 128 A4 pages of 12 point Times New Roman.
It also means that of the (approximately) 75,000 words I’ve reviewed through this process 56.6% of them are gone. More than half! In a way that’s liberating, but in another way it’s terrifying. Yet I have faith in the process. I must have faith in the process.
This manuscript was flabby and lazy. For year it had built up its corpulence until it was too sluggish and stubborn to fight back, but now I’ve come to whip it in to shape and by November I want it mean, lean and undeniably impressive!
Five weeks. 167,000 words. 545 pages.
*cue ‘Gonna Fly Now‘
September 27th, 2012 at 1:22 am
It sounds like you’re making great progress! I’m convinced that a lot of what makes good writing is careful, thorough revision. That’s the part my students often want to skimp or skip, but that’s the part I personally need the most. Good storytelling, I think, isn’t just brevity, but I’m trying to polish and distill the story into its best form.