Milwordy: January Wrap Up


Average Daily Wordcount (Week 22 Only): 2,106

Week 22 Total Wordcount: 14,746

Average Daily Wordcount (January): 2,705

January Total Wordcount: 83,878

Year Total Wordcount: 444,520

Words to go:

Year: 555,480

Previous Milwordy Wrap Ups: September. October. November. December.

I hit my monthly goal of 83,334 words, but only just.

In fact, of the five months I’ve been doing this, only in November did I get fewer words than January.

So, why did January feel like my most successful month yet?

You know, Milwordy is a challenge that is entirely focused on quantity. The only real requirement of this challenge is to write a total of one million words in a year. It doesn’t matter where those words come from or if they’re any good. I just have to write one million of them.

I have been attempting to make sure these words aren’t completely wasted. I am trying to learn to be a better writer here, so I’m not satisfied to simply get as many words as I can without concern for quality.


Admittedly, during the first few months, I know that there were plenty of times when I wasn’t giving this challenge my all. I was only concerned about the number of words I wrote. The day I got 23k words comes to mind. That day wasn’t about quality. It was about quantity.

Yet, in January I feel like a switch flipped in my head. I’ve still been writing a lot, and fast, but I have slowed down a bit. I have been allowing ideas to percolate in my head longer. I’ve been more focused on quality. I truly believe that when I look back at what I’ve written during this challenge, my work in January will stand up better to critique than what I’ve written before.

Especially if I’m comparing it to December. Oh, boy, that was a train wreck.

Another reason why January has felt like a success is that I’ve gained focus. With the exception of November, I’ve pretty much allowed myself to work on whatever I want which can be freeing. But it can also mean that I’m not making a lot of forward progress on a particular project.

This past month, I set some extra parameters for myself. I dedicated a minimum of 750 of my daily 2,688 words to my urban fantasy/faerie novel, and at least 15 minutes daily to brainstorming for another novel I’m hoping to start drafting in April. I feel like I’ve made so much more progress because of this, and I’m so grateful that I chose to put these boundaries on what I work on daily. Structure helps.

I’m hoping to carry this renewed sense of purpose into February and beyond. But February is going to be extra challenging for me. You see, instead of keeping an even daily goal of 2,740 words per day throughout the year—I gave myself a monthly goal of 83,334 words. That’s all well and good when the month has 31 days, breaking my daily goal down to 2,688 words.

But as you know, February got short-changed on its number of days. With only 28 days to get 83,334 words, my daily goal becomes 2,976.

I know that an extra 300 words a day might not sound like a lot, but when you are already writing A LOT, even just a few more words a day can feel like a burden. We’ll see how it turns out. Wish me luck!

How was January for you? Did you find yourself sticking to all those New Year’s resolutions? Are you feeling hopeful about what you will accomplish in February? Let me know down in the comments!


Published by Robin J

I’m an aspiring novelist who hasn’t quite figured out this whole writing thing. I’ve been scribbling down stories since I was a little kid, but only dared to dream that I could write something worth reading as I became an adult. At 33, I still feel like I have a lot of progress to make before I’m ready to try publishing, but I’m getting better every day. Typically I write Fantasy (of both the Adult and YA varieties), but I have dipped my toe in Romance and Sci-Fi. When coming up with a story to write, all I care about is that the plot grabs my attention and the characters tug at my heartstrings. The genre is an afterthought. I tend to set myself lofty goals. Mostly I fail, but occasionally I surprise myself and succeed. Either way, I enjoy being pushed beyond the limits of what I thought I could do. That’s what I’m hoping to accomplish with the Milwordy challenge. I may or may not reach the full million words, but I know I’m going to learn a lot along the way. I hope you will, too!

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