(This post assumes you’re already using Scrivener. If you haven’t made the leap yet, check out my post “5 Reasons You Should Be Using Scrivener.”)
I try to write 500 words every day (except during NaNaWriMo – all rules go out the window in November). It’s easy enough to keep track on when I’m working on a new draft, or even if I just get rolling on a small segment, but when I’m at the stage that I’m at now, when I’m editing and trying to fine tune, it gets much more difficult. These days, I monitor time spent instead of words written, but I still like to know, at the end of the day, how many words I added to my project.
So I am very excited to share that I learned a new hack for Scrivener to help with this. (Many thanks to UCLA Extension writing guru Mark Sarvas for this one.)
In Scrivener, go to the Projects drop down menu, then click on Project Targets (shortcut command shift T), and you will get a little window that pops up to tell you how many words (net) you have added in your current session. What’s more, if you click on the options button, you can adjust when the counter resets. I have mine programmed to reset every night at midnight.
If you give it a try, you’ll see that you can also track total words written, which I like because when you’re working on a section in Scrivener, you only see the word count for that section. I find it deeply satisfying to watch my total word count creep higher and higher.
I know there are about a thousand little Scrivener hacks that I could probably use, but it’s always a fine line between learning to use a great tool and just flat out procrastinating. Some day, when I have nothing else to do, I will spend a whole day watching Scrivener tutorials on YouTube, and then I will be a Scrivener master (wha-ha-ha), but for now I will settle for finishing my novel.