Word Count Trackers for NaNoWriMo and Beyond
Writers everywhere, newbies and old hands, are staring down the barrel of NaNoWriMo. *cue tense theme music*
At the moment, I’m wading hip deep the first draft muck of my work-in-progress. I don’t know if I’ll be joining the ranks of
psychotic intrepid ink-slingers in November but I am learning the value of a monthly deadline, even a self-imposed one.
My goals are considerably more modest than the 50,000 words in 30 days NaNoWriMo goal. I’m aiming for 13,000 words monthly which works out to 500 words daily for 26 days of the month. Though I’d ideally write more, this allows me a doable goal and the option for a day off when I need it.
In September, I added 16,900 words and used three of my four allotted days off. To keep myself both encouraged and honest, I’m keeping track with two word count tools.
StoryToolz offers several resources for authors, such as a readability analyzer, cliché buster and random conflict generator as well as the word count meter. Once you create your word count meter, you can copy the HTML code and paste it into your blog’s sidebar or a post.
The meter updates automatically when you add words and you can also see your word count history with the progress chart.
WriteChain is an iPhone app which can also be used on the iPad. As far as I know, it’s not currently available for Android OS. WriteChain allows you to set your daily writing goals and “coast days,” the number of consecutive days off you can take without breaking your “chain.” You create links in your writing chain for every day you write.
I love that this app lets you set unique goals, whether it’s a personal goal of 50 words or a NaNoWriMo goal of 1667 words. Adding words is extremely simple and you can edit your session history to correct any days you forgot to add. The coast days feature lets you decide how many days off you will take in a row (be careful, more than two can result in a loss of momentum) so that you don’t have to feel overwhelmed by a nonstop work schedule but the chain, much like the badges on the 750 Words site, gives you incentive to not let too many days slide by.
NaNoWriMo, of course, offers fantastic tools for keeping track of writing stats but WriteChain and StoryToolz can be used anytime. Whether you take the NaNoWriMo plunge or not, having a fun way to track your writing sessions may keep you motivated to hit those word count goals, whatever they may be.
Are you gearing up for NaNoWriMo? How do you like to keep track of your daily word count? What’s your favorite way to get motivated for writing sessions?
Image Attribution (In Order of Appearance):
Typewriter by toastytreat87, on Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Word Count (mine)
Progress Chart (mine)