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JULY STATS

Days Writing: 12
New Words: 3,069
New Chapters: 0.75

Total Word-count: 83,150
Total Chapters: 22.75

My goal for July was to incrementally improve on my performance in June. In June I wrote and edited 2,893 words through 10 days of work, so for June I wanted to work at least 11 days and write and edit at least 3,000 words.

And I’m pleased to say that I met both goals! As you can see I worked during 12 days and wrote 3,069 words. Given how close those numbers are to my goals, you might assume that I made a special push at the end of the month just to hit them, and you’d be absolutely right! But I suppose that’s one of the purposes of goals, to motivate you when you realize you’re in danger of missing the mark.

And I’ll keep the same “small incremental improvement” goal for August. I’ll try for 13 days of working and 3,200 words written and edited, which is a very doable goal.

I also had a happy realization this last month. When I first finished the outline for my novel I estimated that it would run for 32 chapters. But while writing I have removed and condensed some segments, but I never updated my estimates until just recently. Now my expectation is that my last chapter will be either number 28 or 29. That might not seem very significant of a change, but just knowing I’m about 6 chapters from the end of my first draft, instead of 9, is extremely encouraging!

I’ll let you know how things went in August one month from now, and here’s a small piece from the material that I wrote in July.

The hairs on the back of Clara’s neck stand on end and she wrings her hands. What is she supposed to do? She’s already doing everything that she can, but this is beyond her.

“Mother, please be alright!” she kisses Eleanor’s hand. “I’m going to get father. I have to. Please be alright!” She presses her lips against the hand once more, then turns and dashes out of the cottage.

She hurries along the trail as fast as her feet can carry her, legs whipped by the tall grass as she cleaves through it. Her fear gives her an amazing clarity. Any distraction that would normally occupy her mind is banished before it can enter. She doesn’t even allow herself to be deterred by any fears: not of hidden creatures lurking in the grass, and not of her mother alone at the camp. What Eleanor needs right now is swiftness, not worry.

Though not too much swiftness. With her enhanced clarity of mind, Clara realizes that if she keeps running flat-out, she won’t be able to keep up the pace all the way to William. The fastest way to get help for her mother is to run only at the highest speed she can maintain all the way from start to finish. So she slows her feet, but only a little, trusting that she will push herself beyond her normal capabilities.

As for the trip back, she gives no thought to it. She will expend all the energy that she has just to get to William, and then it will be up to him to take things from there.

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