Police mystery writer Thonie Hevron helps us realize the value of word counts. Thank you, Thonie!
By Thonie Hevron
Counting words is downright annoying. Yet demands for word count are everywhere—agent/publisher guidelines, contests, academic papers, magazine and news articles all are at the whim of the digit. So imagine my delight when Microsoft Word tucked an unobtrusive little tally on the lower left hand corner of each word document.
Keeping track of the number of words has morphed into a work tool that I use to measure my productivity. I know, I know—artists should be at the mercy of the muse not the calculator. I’ve heard this by many successful writers through the years but it’s never really worked for me. Gore Vidal said, “Amateurs hope, professionals work.” Thankfully, I read that quote early in my serious writing career. What matters is getting words on a page. Period.
As a kid, I spent a lot of time looking out the window, day dreaming. Teachers…
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