Sunday, April 20, 2008

Number crunching

As I work on the chapters I have little bits that I cut out--nothing like the cutting I'll have to do later I suppose--and I typically just paste them at the end of the document after a mark indicating the end of the chapter. I hang on to them in case I decide later I need them. I also sometimes jump down to that space and type quick notes or do some freewriting of possible new material.

All of that stuff is a mess that is in the way the further along I get, so to clean up I just made a "leftovers" document and cut all of it from the chapters I'm done with so far--chapter s 1 through 4. It totals 32 pages, which is a lot less than I thought it was going to be.

This also makes it easer to calculate the length of the drafts. So, some quick back of the envelope figuring:

-Chapters 1-4 range between 42 and 55 typed pages and average 46 pages.
-That's a total of 185 pages.
-They average 14,890 words.
-That's a total of 59,575 words.

If the work developing the rest of the book has a similar affect on the length of my first draft:
-Part 1 (chapters 1-8) will be 120,000 words or 370 typed pages, which is about the equivalent of a 200-220 page book printed.
-Part 2 is intended to be about 1/3 to 1/4 of the books, so assuming it is 1/3, the entire book would be 180,000 words or 550 pages, which is about the equivalent of a 325 page book printed.

All of which means that it will have grown 50 percent from the first draft and will probably need to be cut down by about the same amount again to be really readable.

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