February was some distance from being my most productive month (that’s shorthand for: it was fairly rubbish). I did however, make a start on a significant project.

February was my first month where I (a) decided that would aim to write every morning (even weekends) and (b) start recording why I didn’t write on those sad, forlorn days where I, er, didn’t write. To be honest it doesn’t make for very inspiring reading, but as with all things quantifiable it helps me to spot patterns and, in particular, take note of the things that stop me from getting my writing done.

For February lack of sleep was again my worst enemy. Almost all of the days I didn’t get up to write are marked with notes like “bad night’s sleep” or “overslept”. For most of these days I made a conscious decision that more sleep was needed. This pattern has continued, to a degree, during March so I have a clear decision to make: do I get up regardless of how tired I feel when the alarm goes off, or is 30 minutes’ sleep more important? I suspect that option one is the right answer …

However, February wasn’t all bad. I’ve had the plot for a full-length version of my short story Graves circulating in my head for some time. February was, it turns out, the right time for it to start making its way onto the page. So, I wrote first drafts of the first two chapters. Pretty big milestone right there. I also re-edited a few of my earlier stories, getting them ready for the eventual short story collection. And that was largely it.

As it’s already mid-February there’s little point me discussing any sort of plan for February. Obviously continuing work on the novel is a priority, but there’s also a couple of short stories that are demanding to be finished off, so don’t be surprised if they take a featured role in March. There’s also the thought that I really need to discipline myself enough to get up and write every morning however I feel (which means getting up as soon as the alarm goes off). But that’s really not my favourite thought right now. (My favourite thought right now, if you were wondering, is going home and sitting in front of the TV with a shot of my new favourite whisky: Lagavulin).

Anyway, onto the stats…

(I’ll add that I know the stats below aren’t fully accurate. There are some days that I know I wrote or edited blog posts, and I’ve failed to capture those. I also spent a few mornings doing line corrections on There Is A Light, aided by ProWritingAid, for which I didn’t feel it was appropriate to capture any sort of word count).

The stats

  • Number of morning writing sessions: 18 (out of a possible 28)
  • Words written: 8,936
  • Words edited: 5,417

At some point I’m going to do some sort of comparative analysis – maybe a neat little graph of writing/editing progress over the year.

But not right now.