Posted by on Jun 6, 2017 in On Writing: Craft and Commiseration, Pentamerone (Tale of Tales), Personally..., The Fourth Orange, Word Count Updates and Writing Goals | 0 comments

I was going to make the title of this post a play on May Day and then fell into a Wikipedia hole about May Day, the spring holiday, vs MayDay, the distress signal, and barely escaped so that’s why you got a boring title instead. The fact that it is already June is absolutely mind blowing to me but, anyway, let’s talk numbers…

Here’s what May 2017 looked like in writing…

Total Words Written This Month
56,103 words

Average Words Per Day
1,810 words

Monthly Goal
My only goal for the month was to finish the play… that I didn’t get to finish so… yeah.

Yearly Goal
297,506/500,000 words* (60%)
*= Newly increased goal for the year as I hit the old one already

Things completed:

Other Works Actively in Progress this Month:

  • my adaptation of Pintosmauto
  • non-fiction project about being a new parent and writer


As discussed in this post, I spent most of the month trying to get the 4th Orange full length revision done for a deadline important to me and failed on that which put me in a weird mental place, writing wise. So I have put it aside for a while until I feel like I can approach it again without all the negative blergh that whole experience has colored it with. In the meantime, I started something a bit easier to write: a nonfiction book about being a writer and new parent. Yes, it’s very meta, which makes it much easier to write so it’s a nice palate cleanser. I’m not sure yet if it will be just a big blog series or an eBook as well. eBook would be handy because it might throw some coin my way to make up for the unfinished play but we’ll see what’s in the cards.

And if you read that aforementioned post where I was stressing about, well, everything related to writing, you’re probably sitting there like, WTF, Hillary? Why did you immediately start a new project if you’re already stressed and pressed for writing time?

And the answer is: I am a shark when it comes to writing. I have to keep moving to survive. Even those days last month where I talked about not getting any time to work on my play, I was still jotting down blog posts, writing in my baby journal (like a baby book, but my narrative way) and doing other little things here and there as I had a minute. Just because I didn’t have the time to sit down and work on my revision doesn’t mean I wasn’t writing at all. I’m literally always writing.

I like having a project to focus my efforts so I’m not just talking to myself (which, let’s face it, is what a blog post like this one is) and one like this is perfect right now for several reasons. If it never becomes a full project, it’ll still be useful as blog posts. It’s so closely related to my current situation that it helps me collect my thoughts and focus my own parent of newborn/writer brain. And, since literally everything I do day to day reminds me of the topic, I’m never at a loss of words for it!

Interesting to note: Aside from last year, when I put up a just under 75k, this was my second biggest May word count of all time. Just goes to show that the months I write the most words are rarely the months when things are going well. It’s usually more a sign that I’m just throwing words at a problem to try to make it work!

Up Next

I’ve got final edits coming soon for a play I need to do but, otherwise, I plan to doodle around with this non-fiction project for a the near future (I have already written a good chunk of it). Obviously there are things I’d really like to finish soon, such as the Self-Publishing a Stage Play book and 4th Orange full length but I’m entering the summer when I’ll have less time to write than ever before so I’m not going to set myself up for disappointment. I’m going to swim with my littles, write when I get the chance and otherwise fill my brain up with as much content fuel as I can. Lots of reading (preschooler has been into bigger books for a while now and it’s nice to be reading her things I’m interested in as well, even if reading a chapter book while holding the infant is way harder than doing the same with a picture book), playing with my boos, and enjoying the out of doors.

Right now, I’m working on a section for the new parent writer book about finding balance between the work and the wee ones, remembering all the ways I’ve been good and bad at that in my own life. It’s really the perfect thing to invest my efforts into as I navigate this wild new world as a writing mother of two. And it keeps the pen moving which, in the end, is all that matters.