Looking back at the 2015 Daily Writing Challenge

Happy New Year! I decided to take a nap at around 6:30pm last night and ended up sleeping until 2am, so I missed midnight kisses and whatnot. It’s 2016 now and I figured it’s a good time to see how I did with last year’s resolution: write something non-work-related every day.

Let me just say up front that I did not write something every day. And I was feeling pretty down on myself about it, so I hadn’t recorded my word counts since September. I was convinced that I’d barely written anything for the latter half of the year. But this morning I went through and tallied everything, and it’s a lot better than I’d thought. While it’s true my monthly word count fell below 10,000 words from August onward, I wasn’t that far from April, June, and July’s totals (with the exception of November, which I will forgive myself for, as I was very depressed that month).

I wrote a total of 175,809 words in 2015. That is huge. If all these words had been for the same project, I’d have a novel. Of course, they weren’t; I wrote a bunch of smaller things. I don’t know how many projects there were, but they ranged from five-sentence ficlets to (as-yet-unfinished) chaptered works. The majority were one-off stories, which seem to be my strong suit. Regardless, that’s an impressive number of words, especially since before this past year (technically, November 2014), I had not been doing any creative writing whatsoever.

I’d like to keep writing, but I’d also like to not disappoint myself like I did when I started missing writing days. Failing to meet a goal makes me lose confidence, and I end up not wanting to do anything for fear of further failure. So I think this year I will change my goal. Instead of saying I will write something every day, I will commit to writing every week, with the goal of a certain number of words per month. Since I averaged 14,650 words per month in 2015, maybe I’ll make my monthly word goal 15,000.

I can work out the details, including how to track this (I’m not sure the spreadsheets I used in 2015 are ideal), at a later time. For now, though, I’m pretty sleepy, so I’m going back to bed.


  1. I think a daily writing challenge is really tough, I’ve never managed to commit to more than a month at a time and even then I have days off and catch-ups. You have an impressive annual word count and you have kept the quality of your writing to a really high standard – well thought out plot, fantastic use of humour, great characterisation and your style always makes me want to read more.

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