A Month of Writing – October 2016

MoW-ENI find it hard to believe another year of my 365k Club adventure slowly comes to an end. It feels like I’ve just started it, but on the other hand with the turmoil and changes in my life, I haven’t really settled back into my writing routine until autumn. And once I was positive I’d be able to catch up with all my tasks, life again proved me wrong.

bullseyeoctOctober started well and I tackled all my writerly tasks: writing, editing,and beta-reading. I felt optimistic about catching up and slowly adding those 15,000 words I’ve been missing throughout the year. And then, of course, “things happened” and I’ve spent nearly two weeks buried under documents, papers, and on the phone. The stress that accompanied it rendered my writer side almost useless and even though I managed to write daily, hoping to keep the habit alive, I didn’t even bother trying to reach my daily goals. Then, when I was in the clear, I rushed to the month’s end, catching up… but I couldn’t even dream of getting in any extra words.


One would think that with such result I’d deem October a failure, but I see it as the opposite. With half of the month lost, I’ve still managed to get my words in, and I’ve hit my monthly goal. On top of that, I haven’t skipped a single day writing and by now I can boast 5 months of not having missed a day, and it feels like my routine is finally back to where it’s supposed to be.


More importantly, I’ve also reached my 3/4 of the way milestone which means so far I’ve written over 273,500 words. When I think of all the “bad months” and all the procrastination that happened in-between, I’m even more impressed by the number and happy that I’ve decided to join the 365k Club. Even if not all of those words will see the light of day, with such a huge amount, I get to pick the best ones.


I’ve also did a lot of beta-reading, and even though editing was the one to suffer the most (since it requires the most focus), I still got a little over 10 hours of it done and I still can meet the self-imposed deadline for my fantasy novel, finishing this round of revisions by the end of the year. Unless, of course, something else gets in the way.

Red Pen Badge

With the end of the year being so close, I also start thinking about 365k Club 2017. The registration have already opened – if you want to join me in this adventure, head over to 10 Minute Novelists group on Facebook (you need to be a member of the group to partake) and fill out the registration form. The biggest change for the next year is that writers choose their own daily goal (from as little as 100 to as much as 2000 words a day).


It means that I also will have to choose my goal, and even though I like the challenge of 1000 words a day, you’ve seen me mentioning many times that I should focus on editing a bit more. I could pick a lower word count and devote the extra time to working on my exiting projects, but that would require a whole new level of discipline. I guess I still have a month to decide (the registration closes early December), and until then I’ll be working toward meeting this year’s goals.

How about you? How did October go for you?

Joanna Maciejewska

Joanna Maciejewska is a fantasy and science fiction author who enjoys all things SFF: books, movies, and video games. Her short stories appeared in magazines and anthologies in Polish and in English. Her epic fantasy adventure series, starting with By the Pact, is available in ebook and paperback at all major retailers.

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. sjhigbee

    I agree – I think October has been an awesome month for you – and I’m SO impressed that you have managed to write creatively on a daily basis for 5 months. That is a wonderful writing habit to have! I’ll be interested to see what you’ll decide to do in 2017 and though I hesitate to offer any advice – you basically don’t need it – I do think that editing should be regarded as part of the creative process as well. Otherwise you’ll end up as I did – with a loft full of half-edited manuscripts that were NEARLY good enough, but not quite there because I begrudged the time and effort necessary to get them there as it wasn’t ‘writing’. These last two years, I’ve been fixing that problem but it has meant that I’ve been trudging through editland for a VERY long time…

    1. melfka

      I always appreciate your advice, Sarah. Even if sometimes I feel it might not work for me, I like to see other perspectives and solutions, so feel free to share it any time :).
      I think I’ve already ended up in the same spot as you. You’re right that editing should be considered a part of the creative process and I envy people who say they actually enjoy it more than writing itself.
      The next year’s focus will definitely be on editing and revisions: I have so many great stories half-finished that I could share. But I’ll try to write a bit too.
      Two years in editland? Sounds dreadful. It speaks a lot about your character that you didn’t drop it and write something new. Fingers crossed you’re at the last stretch of it and I’ll try to promptly follow your footsteps.

      1. sjhigbee

        It hasn’t been quite so awful as it sounds, as I’ve been working alongside other folks and responding to beta readers, etc – and some professional interest. And I am also in the process of improving my writing, which has to be part of the job. I have a rather quirky, individual style which needs some smoothing out.

  2. J.R.Bee

    You done awesome gal! I look forward to seeing your edited stuff 🙂

    1. melfka

      Thanks! Hope you’re not going to regret it. 🙂

  3. portiabridget

    Your drive is so incredible and you are always so positive, no matter what…I admire that part of your character! Let’s hope the next month and year will be definitely better for you!

    1. melfka

      Thank you! 🙂 It also helps to have friends like you who keep me going.
      And I do have my negative moments too, but I’ve learned that instead of sitting and whining about myself I should go and read or play a video game. Basically, get myself distracted until the feeling passes. Since I can’t really confront such feelings (they’ll come back), I feel it’s the best way :).

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.