Recently, a thought came to me as I registered that In Pain and Blood on its own, had almost climbed to the same word count as The Rogue King Saga is as a whole. Which means they make a little over 612k together.
Adding the completed stories of Dark One’s Mistress, Golden Dawn, Willow and Dragon pushed it a further 200k. None too shabby. But I wondered just how high I could climb.
Now, my man David Eddings is often quoted saying…
“My advice to the young writer is likely to be unpalatable in an age of instant successes and meteoric falls. I tell the neophyte: Write a million words—the absolute best you can write, then throw it all away and bravely turn your back on what you have written. At that point, you’re ready to begin.”
So let’s push for that benchmark. For the sake of this, I’m not counting all the words I’ve written in the distant past of school days and terrible homework assignments. Or all the blog posts and fanfictions.
I went poking through the unfinished stories, counting only the stuff I plan to keep. And yes, I’ve written over a million words in the past few years. As of today: 1,012,537 words.
Of the stuff I’ve rewritten or am choosing to discard but haven’t yet? That amounts to 660k. I’m still trying to let that sink in… 1.6 Million words seems so… big. No wonder I’ve chewed through so many keyboards and my current one had lost the letters on E, T, A & S keys and is losing D & R. Bah, I hardly ever look down anyway.
I’ll leave you with the final piece of David Eddings’ quote…
“Most of all, enjoy what you’re doing. If you don’t enjoy it, it’s not worth doing at all. If hard and unrewarding work bothers you, do something else. If rejection withers your soul, do something else. If the work itself is not reward enough, stop wasting paper. But if you absolutely have to write–if you’re compelled to do it even without hope of reward or recognition–then I welcome you to our sorry, exalted fraternity.”