Home » Writing » Is that tip-tip-tapping of a keyboard I hear?

Is that tip-tip-tapping of a keyboard I hear?

Even after my proud post where I proclaimed how happy I was to fill an entire notebook, I have succumbed to typing.

Instead of handwriting my next novella, I will be using the modern way and typing it out directly, at least for now. This is due to the fact I was a week late into my schedule when I managed to start it, but also I have written over 20,000 words and am barely a third of the way through.

Yeah, this one is a bit bigger than my others.

And although I am mostly meeting my daily word count goal of 2500, it’s not enough. I need to get out more in order to meet my deadline, and typing allows me to do this.

Yet, even though I am typing and talking about the speed of my work, I don’t want this book to be of lower quality just because I am getting it out quicker.

I may type quick, but what use is that to me if people don’t enjoy my stories for the quality of what is written?

When I handwrite, I usually type up what I wrote the next day to help refresh me on what I wrote but also I edit as I go; I add more detail, find better ways of explaining things, fix sentence structure, check facts, etc, as I type it up. So when I complete my first draft, it has actually undergone one edit already.

So, in order to keep this up, I am planning on typing out my scenes and then the next day, reading over them and editing them, to mimic the process of what I’d normally do to my handwritten stuff. That way, I know that I am still going to be putting down a better first draft then what I normally can when typing.

I mean, obviously, the draft goes through a zillion edits before it’s finished anyway, so I shouldn‘t really worry. But, doing it this way with editing my typed stuff the next day, I can still keep that process whilst also getting out a bigger word count (hopefully) and still meeting my deadline!

Have you ever realised your book is going to be longer than planned? Do you manage to keep to your deadlines?

Progress Report

Word Count: 3098 (26,117 total word count).

Status of Third Manuscript: Writing first draft.

March E-Book Review: 100% read.

54 thoughts on “Is that tip-tip-tapping of a keyboard I hear?

  1. It’s very interesting to read about your process. I always thought writing slows it down but I can see how it works for you. My current WIP has gone longer than I expected it to but I suspect it’s just because I’ve had the story in my mind for so long it’s developed more than I realized. Good luck and don’t worry about the length. It will come together eventually.

    • Well, having a story developing well in your head is always a good thing 😀 I think that’s the problem with this one I’m writing too, I’ve been working on it in my head for a couple of years and now it’s coming to write it I realise I can write more because I have been thinking on it so long!

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  2. Trust me – typing is way better. It saves time. Plus if you keep up that habit, the words will flow easier. By typing faster, your work quality won’t suffer but instead you’ll save time to write more & better. You can always keep a shorthand notebook for notes. I use my trusty phone as a notebook for when I get ideas so I can jot them down fast before I forget, lol.
    I used to do it like you too but then decided typing is better. I reread what I’ve written a dozen times while I’m still not finished with the book, because it’s only when you re-read that other things will come to you. You’ll add a sentence here, delete something there. You’ll perfect it that way.

    • Typing is much more efficient, I have to admit 😀 Still will keep a notebook handy as you say, just for those times rigging up the laptop would take too much time, I always worry I will forget the idea before then!

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  3. Typing lets your writing keep up with your brain. You might find you like it better. By 4th grade, my students type as fast as they handwrite. They’re always amazed at that.

    • I’m do type fast, which does help because my ideas sometimes can flying out of my brain so fast it’s easier to get them down typing than handwriting! 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  4. I actually just re-committed to my NaNo from last year because it was much longer than the original 50k I’d shot for. I’ve probably got 20-30k to finish up the plot, but I’ll also probably cut a lot of the “filler” crap I used to hit my first word count. We’ll see how it goes.

    • Always got to get the first draft down before you can really see what’s happening. By the time I’ve cut out the unnecessary stuff from mine, it will probably hit around what I normally do 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

      • Yeeeeah, there’s a lot of junk in mine.

        It was fun to do a NaNo, but towards the end it became less about the story and more about the word count. I lost the feel of it and it became a chore. I’m happy to be excited again, hopefully it’ll finish up quickly while I’m still pumped up.

        Best of luck with your newest piece! It sounds like you’ve got a good thing going. 🙂

    • That’s very true, at least it’s already been partly seen to before I finish the whole first draft. Definitely go into it then with a better state of mind 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting, always much appreciated 🙂

  5. I love taking hand written notes but when it comes to actual writing, I prefer typing. Of course, if I don’t have a computer nearby and want to work on something, I do it with pencil and paper. If that happens, I do try to type as soon as I’m home or wherever I can access my laptop.

    I never know how long my fiction writing will be. That’s also something I enjoy with my non fiction and how I tend to only reply to call for papers or with a contract as I am with my book. I have a word count, so it helps me shape things more clearly.

    • Typing should make a big difference, just got to get down to actually doing it 😀 Hand written is great, but it does take up so much time.

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

    • Yeah, it does get rather interesting when I come to type up my work and I can barely work out what I’ve scrawled down 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  6. If you’re at 20,000 words, and only a third of the way through, I think you’re going more for a full novel than a novella.

    Just sayin’.

    • Well, I’m keeping going and seeing where it ends, better to just keep writing and letting it flow then trying to constrain it now. Can work on shortening in the edits, though cutting stuff out always hurts! 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  7. I have to type because I’m constantly making changes so I just end up with a page of scribble if I use pen and paper. As far as my novels go – they usually end up shorter than I expect because I just cut cut cut! 😉

    • Yeah, I’m thinking this one will end up about the right amount by the time I’ve cut out the stuff that’s not needed 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  8. I’m useless at deadlines unless someone pins me down! I still find myself writing at odd times and though I was getting better at it, I’m slipping again. I’m looking forward to CampNaNoWriMo because I’ll have no choice but to follow a structure again.

    Great post. I do a little of both (type/write) – if I’m out and inspiration strikes I have my trusty notebook. If I’m already at the computer I tap away at the keys. I’m editing at the moment and though I used to print out and go through it by hand, I’ve been converted!!

    Thanks for sharing

    • You’re doing CampNaNoWriMo? Good luck with it! 😀 Sounds like fun, intense fun mind you!

      Typing and computers do make the writing process much easier.

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  9. I usually find that my stories end up longer than I had intended, and have finally come to terms with the fact that i write big. I’ve made peace with that, and also with the fact that my brain gets into the groove when I write longhand. Looks like we have similar processes – longhand first, then make edits while transcribing. I do the same thing if composing on the keyboard, as well.

    • I guess it’s better to write the story and let it flow for as long as it needs to be, can always cut out stuff later in the edits 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  10. That’s how I started doing my drafts as soon as I got my first computer. You start each day by reading over what you did the day before and making corrections, so you clean up and refresh at the same time. I used to be a handwriter too, but typing is just so much faster. And it’s easier to just go straight to the machine. The back button rocks!

    • I think it is nice to refresh myself everyday on what I wrote before, and tidying it up is always nice. Far from finished, but at least it’s a little better when first draft is done 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  11. awesome job.. I still occasionally use my pen and paper but i have foundit a bit of a timesavr ( and easier to read) my typing and computer.. I have found some wonderful online notebooks and onenote in my offfice program so i can type form my kindle or phone and send ot my computer also.

    • There’s so many useful tools on the computer, as you say, much easier to have all the resources to hand then struggling with pen and paper.

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  12. I always type my stories straight into the computer, I don’t bother handwriting first – it’s too time consuming. And for me it works fine. But there’s no method that’s more valid than the other. It’s whatever suits you and it sounds like you’re doing just fine. 🙂

    • I definitely think it’s about trying different things and seeing how it works. I am finding typing working well for me at the moment, it’s amazing how much time it cuts down on doing it straight onto the computer 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  13. Have I ever realized a story was going to be longer than I planned? Yes–quite frequently, actually. I’ve had novellas turn into novels and short stories turn into novellas. I’m impressed that you do so much handwriting. While I still enjoy the practice of handwriting and try to do a bit of journaling daily, I worry that if I tried to hand-write an entire book my wrist would give out.

    Good luck with your writing goals. I look forward to hearing more about your stories.

    • I’ve been pretty good at having stories sticking to novella size so far, but this one is just really taking on a life of its own! 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  14. Oh, dear, my stuff is almost always longer than I expect! Except for short stories — those pretty much turn out the way I expect.

    Congrats on all your progress and your excellent word counts!

  15. I like the idea of creating deadlines–its great that you are meeting your daily goal! I have been bad on committing to deadlines and am way behind in completing my 3rd novel. My hypothetical goal is to complete my novel by the end of the year (I will not be able to continue writing it until August because of my schedule), but I hope to complete it before then!

    • I find I work well to deadlines I set myself, I never have before, but with writing I seem to be really set on them 😀

      Any goal to look towards is good, it’s not like it has to be set in stone, writing is nice that you can do it when you can.

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  16. I have just the opposite…I shoot for between 75-85,000 words, and usually end up with just at 74,000! Then when I edit, I have to go back in and add to the word count. But I also start off typing. My hand would cramp up if I wrote it all out. 😉

    • It’s always good to have a goal in mind, on my last novella I planned for about 40,000 and got 37,000, so I guess the stories go where they want us to 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  17. While I was working full-time I wrote long hand into notebook in my tea and lunch breaks believing I would do the same once I was at home full-time, but now I write on my computer. I was slowly on the computer at first, trying to find the right keys, looking up spelling etc., but now three years later I’m more confident and write faster.
    At the moment, I working on my third novel after having short stories published.

    • It is definitely easier to type, and much quicker. Being able to put it down straight away onto the computer rather than typing it saves me a huge amount of time 😀

      Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂

  18. Keep up with the handwriting, friend. I used to have the loveliest penmanship and now, due to lack of use, my scroll has taken a roll off the side of a cliff and my hand acts like it’s attached to the end of someone else’s arm.

  19. Funny you should mention that. I though my current WIP was good at 61k. Beta readers wanted more and it’s now closing in on 75k and I’m midway through revisions. I was a bit surprised at how much longer it’s gotten but I think it’s better for it.

    With deadlines, I am super type A. I always meet them or beat them. But I also learned how to set a clear scope for what I will do and then create reasonable deadlines that I can meet.

  20. Pingback: Book Update + Writing, Feminism, Disability and Media Links | Natacha Guyot

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