Word count: 32898. That's half of my peak monthly output, so obviously I succeeded in my goal of writing a lot less this month. For the first part of the month I did an anal job of staying at or below 1000 words; six of my entries were exactly 1000 words. However, I found this to be dissatisfying at times; there were some entries (WE GOT DRACULA, IMF Chief Escapes) that were natural at a short length, but there were some (Kon-Tiki, Star of Stage and Screen) that really wanted to be longer, in some cases a lot longer, but what I wound up with felt chopped and incomplete.

It felt good to write less. I had more time with family, and I could feel my brain decompressing. On the other hand, there were often times when I pushed back from the keyboard after writing for only 45 minutes and said "That's it?" Often it felt like cheating. Indeed, for the latter half of the month, my entries crept up in length. I've basically decided that limits like the 1000 word thing should be like the Pirate Code in that they're more guidelines than rules.

I like occasionally writing Jackpot and Lopez stories because they're pure cheez-wiz. They're all cheap laughs and cardboard-cutout science fiction, and they're easy to write. However, I don't think they help me develop any writing skills, apart from helping acclimatize me to writing regularly and on extended projects. I must ensure I limit how much of such things that I write.

After a month of shorter writing I feel somewhat refreshed and ready to write some more story-length stuff. Don't hate writing yet. Keeping on keeping on.
Word Count: 58547. Holding more or less constant on averaging in the neighborhood of 2000 words per entry. I am interesting in bringing that way down. I believe May will be the month of capping entries at 1000 words, meaning if I can't bring it in below that, I need to break it into pieces or not write it. The madness must stop.

I wrote a few things I liked, especially Mirka U Bitch and The Tree Museum. I wrote a lot of things that I think aren't bad but really were uninspired. I have definitely reached the point where 1) it is harder to come up with good ideas for stories, and 2) I'm tired of writing every day, so a lot of the joy has gone out of this. This is work. Nevertheless, I remain focussed on my mission, which is to get better at writing by writing a lot.

I don't hate writing, but I hate time spent at this keyboard that could be spent with the people I love. I'm also nervously looking forward to a vacation I'll be taking in the summer, where for most of a week I'll have no internet connection or even a reliable power source. What the hell am I going to do then?
This month: 62833 words. Not as much as January, but creeping back up there. I feel I am writing more than I ought to be writing. I'm doing a better job of taking advantage of odd bits of time to write (i.e. soccer practice, waiting for a conference call to start, etc.) but I'm doing worse at avoiding staying up late to do pre-writing. If I could master the art of dictation while driving I could recapture a lot of that time, but I am so very much NOT a speak-out-loud writer, I don't even know if that's possible.

This month's extended writing project, Pestle, came in at 24677 words, or roughly half a full-length novel. I find that I like the result and its density; if it were novel length, a subject as light as this would get boring. I suspect what I am learning is that my 'natural' writing niche is definitely more short subject than long subject, and I lean far more toward episodic stories than towards overarching epics. I see no GIANT FANTASY TRILOGIES in my future. I may, however, stray from F/SF.

I think I wrote several good pieces this month, including The Sun Must Feed and The First Funeral. I appreciate all the praise for Most Blessed of Boys but I share [livejournal.com profile] drelmo's opinion that something is missing. If I were to edit it, I'd add a third tier of experiences at the end. There were several bits that are so obviously mailings-in that I'm embarrassed about it and I shan't name them here.

Interesting note from February: I found that at least one Black History aggregator blog linked to Spotlight On: Harriet Tubman, unaware that it wasn't a straight-ahead piece, and those blogs got comments on how horrible it is that malicious people should be making fun of Black History. Part of me wants to protest, but in a way I really am poking fun, so I guess I should shut up. It's not malice, though; I just think that everything has the potential to be hilarious.

Thanks for your support and comments, everybody! Still not hating the writing!
Word Count: 54691. Much better than last month, about 20% lower. This is appropriate.

February is the shortest month, but this felt really long. The latter half of the month was very hard, and I did find myself digging into the idea file more often than I wanted. I had to force a lot of it, which sucks, but I knew this wasn't going to be all fun and games.

I'm disappointed that I deferred work on The Torch twice. That's not cool. Writing longer fiction is hard, but I'm supposed to be tackling the hard things so they won't be so hard any more. I have started planning for another serial project when Torch ends.

I liked Batey and the Seeder, but I think Lean on Me would require the least amount of editing to be made presentable. I was disappointed that I didn't manage to catch the spirit of I Am the Interloper the way I had imagined it. Some Less Romantic Things is just embarrassing, but I am also doing this so I can conquer my fear of being embarrassed if something doesn't come out right, so yay me.

I continue to be grateful that people are catching my stupids so they can be unstupided. I also like getting advice, insights and random pats on the head, so thanks to my many commenters.

I like to write! Everybody should do this.
Word Count: 66565.

Jesus. I do not recall promising that I would write, at this rate, 16 NaNoWriMo's over 2011. That is a lot of fucking words.

Some of the stories I quite like. I am probably unreasonably fond of The Colophon. Some of them I already hate. I did not achieve what I was trying for with Suspicious White Powder.

I discovered how hard it is to write when you have something else big going on. I also discovered how committing to anything for a couple hours out of your already generally busy day has the potential to screw up your life, work, relationships and sanity. Must write smart.

I have been pleasantly surprised to discover that I am not a bad capacity writer. I still do not see myself as having the stamina/patience/whatever to write long fiction, but perhaps writing these stories-by-chapter will change that by the end of the year. I do have the ability to write a decent number of words per hour.

I have also been happy to find that my store of writing ideas has not immediately been exhausted. After an initial burst of idea-creation to give myself a buffer, I have for the last half of the month been able to cook up an idea and write it within the 24 hour period of that day. Thus far everything I have written has been written that day.

I do not yet hate to write.

Thanks for reading my stuff and keeping me honest.

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