Why I Like To Track My Writing22:22
One of the things I love most about NaNoWriMo, apart from the constant state of panic, the tight deadlines, and the company of other crazy writers, is that lovely little chart on the stats page. The simple line graph depicts your progress throughout the month, showing your accumulating word count in a way that gladdens the heart. Quite frankly, I adore that chart. Every time I look at it, I’m sorely tempted to see how big a spike in word count I can make. It’s a huge motivator.
Certainly there is a fair amount of satisfaction to be gained from knowing that I have a great streak of writing, and that I’ve made good progress, but for me, the mere knowledge of knowing how well I’ve done is not enough. I need to see it. And that’s why I love the graph so much. Being able to see what I’ve done, how many days in a row I’ve written, and being able to gaze at my amazing work, makes it more concrete, more real.
For me, being able to see my awesome progress spurs my inner competitor on. I am a highly competitive person, and I always want to beat the best result I can see. I want larger spikes, more of a certain colour, more days over a certain word count. And if I can see that in a handy little chart that gives me all the information in a glance, it’s even more motivating. There’s great power in tracking how much you’ve written.
Another important part about tracking my work is being able to set and achieve consistent goals. A goal forces me to work, and, being such a terribly competitive person, I do like the challenge of trying to beat my goal. By a lot. But at the same time, on those days I’m not quite feeling it, I have a nice easy number to aim for. Because a visual reminder of a day wasted is a terrible thing in my opinion. It stares at me. It knows.
This is how I like to motivate myself. But I’m interested to know. What motivates you? Do you like to track your work? If so, how do you track it?