I finished my latest shiny new idea this past weekend. The work count was just over 48K. As I was writing, I was cranking out the words. At least 2K a day, and many of those days up to 4K. I was on fire and the word count was soaring. Would I get this WIP over 50K?
Honestly, it's been a while since I've written a story that's over 50K. The first draft of Being Human topped at 150K and I cut it in half with the help of beta readers. It wasn't my first story I wrote, but it was the first one I shined and polished. I knew I'd need helping editing it while writing it too. There was no denial there. Since then, I have learned a lot about writing. I know about fluff words, adjectives, passive voice vs active voice. Being Human had all that, and those elements were slowly chipped away.
Now when I write, I'm more aware of my favorite fluff words, just and so. I know not every action needs an adjective. Softly whisper anyone? I will still search out fluff words in my current writing. There are not as many anymore. I'm more aware. I even notice in my blog posts. When I'm proofing and trying to minimize typos (they always slip though!) I notice a fluff word here and there.
I wonder if that's part of why my recent first drafts don't end up as monster 100K+ stories. I know how to tell a story in less words. My writing is tighter. A friend on twitter said maybe my muse was holding back my next monster story. Is it lurking in the back of my mind and waiting to ambush me? Maybe I'm more of a short story writer. Not that 40K+ qualifies as short stories. Just some of my stories are riding the boarder between short story and novel.
Anyone else notice this trend in their writing? Their word count has gone down as their writing ability improved and bad writing habits are broken?