Since coming across The Magic Spreadsheet, I’ve been diligent with writing daily. That’s not to say I’ve developed a bad habit; on the contrary it’s a great thing. Writing consistently is one of the keys to better writing. But I find myself not being able to sleep until I have reached my minimum word count for the day.
I have a fairly busy life. I work, go to the gym, write, publish and online magazine and manage to raise four teenagers somewhere between. Sometimes the end of my day runs into the beginning of a new day. And there’s the rub. As I watch the clock slowly roll towards midnight, I get into a panic. I find myself dropping F-bombs while I open my current writing project or — in this case as you’re reading — a new blog post. Since I work on many projects, I left the title of my Magic Spreadsheet as various projects. It serves a couple of purposes. For one, I’m not stuck with having to use the spreadsheet for one project. I can work on a short story, add to a novel or write a blog post or two. Second, this damn little Google Doc has instilled in me some warped sense of responsibility to make sure I write something before the day ends. And I think that’s the strength of The Magic Spreadsheet. Seeing other writers updating their word counts in real-time compels you to want to be a part of that crowd. Newbies and seasoned vets alike update their word counts daily and that inspires me to write. Sometimes I can knock out a couple thousand words and sometimes I’m lucky if I’m crawling across the 250-word mark by the end of the evening. However, I am writing regularly, which means I’m ultimately writing more in the end.