Risky Regencies

1,504,000 words

Last week one of my children’s teachers gave me a homework assignment: to write about my child in a million words or less. We laughed about it over the dinner table. My husband knew I really could write a book about either of our children. (I was proud of myself when I completed the assignment without adding extra papers, though I did fill both sides.) My children asked me if I really could write a million words. I told them I thought I already had and did some estimates.


410,000 total published words. But I usually do at least 3 drafts that are pretty much total rewrites (the 4th is polishing). So I’ve probably written about 1,230,000 words in order to create these 6 published works.

And that doesn’t count works-in-progress.

I also have 3 chapters of a proposal I’ve put on the back burner: about 9,000 words. Two drafts of the balloonist story: 200,000 more. And about 65,000 words of first draft on the story I started during NaNoWriMo week.

The grand total (drumroll here): 1,504,000 words.

If I ever start doubting that I am a real writer I’m going to look back at this total!

So how about you, Riskies and friends? Do you think you’ve written a million words yet, or does it just feel like it? I wonder how many we’ve written in total? Probably a brazillion. 🙂

And for our friends who aren’t writers, do these numbers come as a surprise?



0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Judy T
Judy T
15 years ago

I’ve a fanfic that’s over 600,000 words now and continuing with no end is sight, though the end has been written. I’m working my way there. The story was started by a friend, but she turned it over to me. On my website there’s another famfic I started, but it’s much shorter (obviously the former took over my life). Then there are countless journals and other stories. My current WIP is almost 74,000. Then there are all the partial stories. And think of the letters and emails written!

15 years ago

I feel as though I have written a bazillion words myself, though the number is more like 100,000. At least in fiction. Then there is all the academic writing

Megan Frampton
15 years ago

I think I’ve probably written over a million books–I’ve written three and a half books, which is 350,000, plus all the revising. Yup, over a million, I think.

Add that to all the music reviews I wrote in 15 years as a music critic, and I’m definitely in your territory, Elena.

Keira Soleore
15 years ago

Fiction-writing if a fairly new thing for me, and writing as a career is relatively new, too. However, as a lifetime total of writing something or the other: Sure, I’d come close to being a millionairess. 🙂

15 years ago

Keep writing all those millions of words so I can read all my trillions 🙂

Elena Greene
15 years ago

Wow we are a productive bunch! Especially Megan who has written a million books. 🙂

Keep writing all those millions of words so I can read all my trillions 🙂

Catslady, those are the words writers love to hear, especially when embarking on what feels like the brazillionth rewrite of a scene. 🙂

Tracy Grant
15 years ago

I never thought of it this way, but thirteen books at around 110,000-125,000 words a book, four novellas, a non-fiction book, not to mention blog posts :-)–so yeah, I’ve probably written a bit over a million words. That sounds like so much!

Diane Gaston
15 years ago

I estimated about 800,000 words of finished manuscripts, but if we count all the social histories and progress notes I wrote over my brazillion year career, I think I’m over 1 million words!

Elizabeth Rolls
15 years ago

I really didn’t want to think about this, Elena! I just looked at the folder for A Compromised Lady and the “Cuts” document (all the bits I chopped out and/or re-wrote) is over 34 000 words. And that was just the major bits that got axed! I’d be well over the million by now.


Elena Greene
15 years ago

Elizabeth I know what you mean. I think it’s like that line from the first Indiana Jones movie-“It’s not the years, it’s the mileage.”

Off to log some more miles… 🙂

Susan Wilbanks
15 years ago

I’ve often wondered what the results would be if you could hook me up to a word-o-meter of some kind that would record every word I write or type during the course of a day. The emails, work and personal. The blog posts and comments, and participation on message boards. Chats to my husband while we’re both at work. Grocery lists. To-do lists. And, of course, manuscript pages, though I suspect if I actually quantified how much time/words I devote to my manuscript vs. puttering around online, it might actually inspire me to limit my websurfing!

15 years ago

I imagine that over my lifetime I hit over a million with school and the time when I did write my own fanfic stories and copied them over and the like. . . so I would be really surprised if I haven’t by now! LOL 🙂


Megan Frampton
15 years ago

ouch, I did write that, didn’t I? I guess that’s where all the editing comes in…one time I had a guy plant a facer on someone’s arm. D’oh.

Get every new post delivered to your inbox
Join millions of other followers
Powered By WPFruits.com
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x