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Tracking your writing?

Discussion in 'Writing Discussions' started by Gribba, Nov 28, 2016.

  1. Gribba

    Gribba Troubadour

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    I was wondering (after attempting NaNo for the first time and failing, due to life, anoying life! :p), are there any tools/websites that any of you use or know about that give a writer the same and/or similar tracking/overview of once work/writing?

    After trying NaNo for the first time I found that I really liked the registering the word count part and to be able to take a look at the stats. I just think I would like to have more than a month to do so, a goal for the year, maybe, would be more fitting for me.
    I did search but there is so much and so many options out there that I got lost in all of it, I was wondering and hoping, that some of you might be able to guide me towards some tools/websites that are good (preferring, free options).

    Thanks and here is hoping for some good advice!
    :D
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2016
  2. Bvboozell

    Bvboozell Acolyte

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    I use Pacemaker to track my writing now. It's similar to NaNo in that you get the stats in graph form, and you can also see what percentage you've got left along the way. You can customize the plan for shorter amounts of writing and a yearly word count as well if I remember correctly. It's also free, so there's that.
     
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  3. I've been keeping track of my stats myself with the help of a calculator. No fancy programs or anything. It's fun and keeps me motivated. I check my daily word count average for my WIP periodically (dividing total word count by number of days)...I have a goal of 1,000 words per day average.

    But, I'm sure there are more options for people who aren't extremely low tech like me :D
     
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  4. Gribba

    Gribba Troubadour

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    HAHAHAHa... I tend to be low tech but I am just being lazy pants... :D
     
  5. Caged Maiden

    Caged Maiden Staff Article Team

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    I see them mentioned in searches frequently. For instance, today I googled "writing romance plots" (and a dozen of related searches) and writing trackers pop up in most writing how-to searches. So, you might just want to start there. See if there's one you like.

    I don't track my words or my time spent writing, so I don't have any to recommend. I rely solely on the "word count" on Word.
     
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  6. Chessie

    Chessie Guest

    Hi, Gribba! I use this one: Writeometer on my tablet/phone. I know it's on Google Play not sure about other retailers. If you have an iphone let me know and I can look some up for you.
     
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  7. Gribba

    Gribba Troubadour

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    I have searched and found so much that I got lost in all of it... I did find something that might be what I was looking for called wordkeeperalpha and now I am looking at Pacemaker.
    I also found something called FocusWriter for Linux, I am looking into that.
    Plus I found a Google Writing Tracker Scripts but I am not sure about it, need to take a better look at that.
    These are the once I thought might be something worth looking into but there is so much out there that of course I can miss some good once.
    So let me know if you know of good once, that I might have missed.


    I have windows phone and run a Linux system on my PC.
    I tend to use google chrome drive for my writing as I can access it from anywhere.
     
  8. Butterfly

    Butterfly Auror

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    I just use excel, and input in a daily word count target, and achievement, then turn it into a graph. The graph can show a daily target line, and the daily amount building up. It actually looks like the nano graph.
     
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  9. Gribba

    Gribba Troubadour

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    That is a great idea, then you can add the things you want to it.
    :)
     
  10. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

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    Yeah, if you use Google Docs, just set up a spreadsheet and track there.

    I don't track my counts any more. I find that loading the app, logging the numbers, taking a moment to admire or despair, tends to get me, er, side tracked.

    With so many alternate drafts, notes, outlines, revisions, the whole word count thing just sort of crumbled into nonsense for me. If I could write in a linear fashion, like some can (curse them all), then it would make more sense to me, especially in dealing with agents and publishing houses.
     
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  11. Gribba

    Gribba Troubadour

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    Thanks guys... :D

    I am hoping that by doing this, I will be more motivated and aware to find the time to write.
    As I was doing NaNo and life got in the way, I lost track of how many days I actually was not able to write and by seeing the stats, it made it so clear to me how easy it is for 2 weeks to go by without noticing it, especially when life gets hectic.

    I have no idea if this will work or not but one can hope it will help.
    I hope it helps me to find the time to write and not let life steal too much of my time.

    :)
     
  12. Caged Maiden

    Caged Maiden Staff Article Team

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    I think that's a great idea! Good for you, finding a tool that will help you create a pattern so that you can make the progress you want. (I always assumed the goal of a word tracker is to keep a tally of words and to see what is considered a productive day and what's a lazy day, or whatever, and I've never had a use for that, because if I'm writing, I'm trying to do my best, and I don't necessarily equate "words added" to "best work".)

    I'm an everyday writer...except when I'm not, HA! And honestly, I just took four months off, so whatever. I think it's important for us to know ourselves, determine what we need, and then make adjustments so that we can get the results from ourselves that we want.

    If the spreadsheet doesn't work, you might just try a pen and sticky notes. Or a calendar, where you can just post a word count in ink every day and then circle all the days you didn't write in red. If it's less about tallying word count progress and more about accountability, there are low-tech options...which usually end up being my first choices because I'm sort of a pen and paper person at heart.

    :) Best wishes!
     
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  13. Gribba

    Gribba Troubadour

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    Thanks Caged Maiden... and yes I think it is more about accountability for me, right now...
    ;)


    I want to use it as a tool to keep me on track, to be more aware of how much I do write each time and how much down time I have. A way for me to keep track of how I am doing while trying this out and of course see if it is something that will work for me (using it as a little helper on the side). :)
    It might give me a better idea of how productive I can be and how often I allow myself to get caught up in life and all its distractions.
    It is not so much about the words or for that matter the quality (my quality is always good). :p
     
  14. Caged Maiden

    Caged Maiden Staff Article Team

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    Yeah, I totally get it now. I guess the reason I always sort of scratched my head about this kind of tracking, is that I'm editing. I have been for years. Sometimes I cut whole chapters from a work and need to make whole new chapters, and those words get rewritten four times before they're "done" enough to go to the crit group. But, it wouldn't make sense for me to keep daily tallies. I just have to put in the time, take time off, and generally keep myself mentally where I need to be so that I gan get actual work done, rather than being so braindead and burned out that I stare blankly at my screen and can't figure out what i'm even trying to do anymore because I've lost my goal.

    HA! Yep. Took four months off when I had a health thing and just didn't rush right back into writing. Of course, I told you guys about the health thing...I lost my ability to comprehend words...so I literally couldn't write. But still...I didn't race back into it even when I was partially recovered.

    Yeah, I can see how we all need to develop whatever we need to keep ourselves motivated and making progress. I'm at my most productive when I'm just exploratory writing. Unfortunately...most of that isn't quality. :(
     
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  15. Chessie

    Chessie Guest

    Keeping track of your progress is perhaps one of the most important things you can do as a writer, whether it's jotting down word count or time spent working. It really helps to look back and not only see how far you've come, but it also helps to see where your productivity can be boosted.

    And it sounds like you have a good idea of how you can work with the "now" of your life. Keeping a writing journal of sorts can help keep you motivated, too. If I may suggest one final thing though, is if you have the ability to write at different times during the day (depending on your schedule), see if your productivity is higher at certain times of the day vs others. It might help you create a writing routine/schedule that's fitting for where you are in the present.
     
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  16. Gribba

    Gribba Troubadour

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    I like that idea... gonna steal that! :D
     
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