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Old 12-22-2017, 10:11 PM   #1
Mr. Briggs
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How Long Does It Take You To Write a Story?

Hi Everyone. I was wondering how long does it take you to write a story? I've had numerous attempts at writing my second story but never get all the way done.
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Old 12-22-2017, 10:14 PM   #2
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I try to write them at one setting. There's a vast difference in wordage from story to story, though. If it goes over 8,000 words I can't hack it in one go.
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Old 12-22-2017, 10:32 PM   #3
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Depends. I recently made one in 2 days, 2 lit pages.

Sometimes it takes weeks, adding a little at a time.

It all depends on how many ideas you have and what you want to do.
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Old 12-22-2017, 10:35 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Briggs View Post
Hi Everyone. I was wondering how long does it take you to write a story? I've had numerous attempts at writing my second story but never get all the way done.
Depending on the length and complexity, anywhere from a couple days to three months. For a complete story of moderate length, three weeks to a month is probably my norm.
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Old 12-22-2017, 10:38 PM   #5
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I'm a long-winded writer--8K words a story thus far. I tend to write it quickly, then proof and correct it slowly. I should probably seek out an editor because I hate proofing my work, it feels like it slows down how quickly I can output. I try and get it done in a day or two, while it's fresh and I'm inspired.

I have a hard time writing shorter works so I've been practicing on that. I'm hoping that soon, I'll be able to have a short erotic fiction penned and proofed and sent for publishing in less than a few hours!
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Old 12-22-2017, 11:06 PM   #6
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I'm all over the map with this one.

The first story I wrote here I wrote in just a few hours over a day and half to get it in before the deadline for last year's winter story competition.

More recently, my stories have taken a couple of months to write. I'm not writing all the time. I write in undisciplined bursts of inspiration when I have time. My latest story was about 14,000 words, and it took me about two months of writing on and off to complete it. But last spring I wrote and published 9 stories between the beginning of April and the end of May. So my pace varies a lot.

I have several stories that I started about a year ago that are sitting on my hard drive, partly written, and awaiting completion. I hope to get back to them and complete them within the next year, but who knows?
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Old 12-22-2017, 11:36 PM   #7
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anywhere from an hour to a couple of weeks. right now, for example, i'm not in the mood. i have one i started and several brewing but i just don't have the motivation. it seems that when i AM in the mood, i get a lot done quickly.
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Old 12-22-2017, 11:42 PM   #8
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At least a month, unfortunately.
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Old 12-22-2017, 11:48 PM   #9
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How long is a piece of string? When I’m writing fiction, I normally write short stories – that is stories with a beginning, a middle, and an end that can be read in a single sitting. Forget all that chapter crap.

I seldom start with an actual word count in mind (unless a publisher has specified one), but stories normally work out at somewhere between two and five thousand words apiece. Since I tend to follow Graham Greene’s idea that a ‘good session’ is 500 or so finished words, I can often finish a story in four or five or six days. And then it gets put in a dark place for another four or five or six days. To bring out the flavour.

I did once write a story in three hours. It was fabulous. Until I read it the following day.
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Old 12-23-2017, 12:19 AM   #10
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Several of ours have taken several days to a week. Others have taken months and some continuations have taken years.

We write when inspired and try not to force any of it.
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Old 12-23-2017, 01:01 AM   #11
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This year I've published five stories but have written eight parts of a big hubris project, and nearly got another part of something else finished, plus three private works, so on that basis, something completed every three weeks. Each between 10k - 15k, so 3k a week, 5k in a good week. Like Sam, 500 finished words a day.

Too much other stuff going on with life to dedicate big chunks of time to writing, so I've just disciplined myself over time not to force it. It gets written when it gets written.
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Old 12-23-2017, 01:16 AM   #12
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That's an interesting question that doesn't really have a clear cut answer for me. Part of it is just what I consider writing versus what other people may consider the actual writing.

For me, the process of story telling begins long before I sit down to touch the keyboard. Call it coming up with an idea. Or call it daydreaming. Or people watching. Or whatever. Actually, I probably spend more time in that alternative reality than I do in the real as my brain flits from one idea to the next.

(This by the way is why I get so tickled when people bring up an idea and want me to write it. I have more ideas in one hot shower than I'll ever live long enough to get on paper. Which is, after all, the hard part.)

So, I've got this idea that kind of separates itself from the troop swinging through the trees in my back brain. That's not enough to work with though, so I set out to capture it and pin it down. Slice it up and see what makes it tick. Most of my ideas don't survive the autopsy I inflict on them at that point.

All right, so meanwhile, back at the ranch, I came up with a goal, off the cuff, that I wanted to try to crank out 10k words per day. Doesn't matter what the words ARE, or didn't when I came up with that number. Just that I would make the effort to reach that goal in a day. (I never have, by the way. Best I've done is 7k and some loose change.)

The problem is that I may be into one plot for a bit of time, then something may spark interest in another I've been working on. Frankly, it's not unusual for me to have three and four cascaded windows open with vastly different stories developing on each. (Which can lead to hilarity and mayhem when I click over to the wrong one to add a bit I had in mind for another. "He did what with his who now?!")

However, the overwhelming majority of these never see anything but the inside of my recycle bin as I decide they really weren't all that great after all and were unsalvageable in their current form.

But, (and this is a big but) quite often I find myself re-plowing the same furrows on a fresh screen. When that happens three or four times, I narrow down my focus and redo the autopsy to see just what it is about the idea that has potential. And where I've been going off the rails.

Also, as I write, I try to pause from time to time and kick back and read with a reader's mindset rather the author of the piece. If I were to stumble across this perusing the digital shelves of Lit, would I give enough of shit to find out what happens next? Or would I back browse the hell out of there and go check out something else or see if I can stir up some shit on the boards?

It's tougher than it sounds, and I'm not sure I've got the knack. I mean, if you think enough of the idea to write it, obviously you are already interested. So, how do you completely shut off the writer and become a reader? (I guess that's where being borderline psychotic helps me a bit.)

During those times where I'm reading, something may sort of flip my switch and I may rewrite a portion. Maybe a paragraph. Maybe add in several paragraphs. Or delete them. Or change one word out of a thousand.

And then it goes all out of whack. Some stories, in my opinion, can be told in a Lit screen or less (about ten pages of short story) while others need three to five. And still others, still in my opinion (and I reserve the right to be just as wrong as the next guy), need an obese twenty-five or twenty-six lit screens for the tale to fully unfold. (Then again, I could just be a long winded crusty old fart with nothing but time on my hands and lacking in the important skill of "get to the fucking point!")

So, any road. The absolute fastest I've ever cranked out a story was a pretty shoddy first attempt on here in about eight hours that I would link, but you really don't want to read and I'm embarrassed to admit I'm responsible for. The longest (so far) was one that took two years from conception to submission that I'm proud enough of I abandoned the user name I submitted it under so I wouldn't feel I had to try to measure up if my next attempt was lame.

At any rate, Mr. Briggs, my long winded, rambling point (if you've made it through all that verbiage) is this; don't sweat it. If you want to write a story (or the story wants you to write it), then you will. Eventually. How long it takes to do it isn't near as important as feeling you've done it as well as you could. (NOT, I should note, as well as someone else might have, but as well as YOU could.)

And, it's time (and past time) I cede the floor to someone with more to say (while using fewer words to do it). So, here's to hoping I see you in the funny pages when you get what you want to write the way you want it written.
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Old 12-23-2017, 01:21 AM   #13
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I typically write longer stories (15-20k words) and each story of this length is written in around 7-10 days.

Prior to that week of writing is generally several weeks of aborted attempts at writing a tale. I'll play around with characters, scenarios, locations etc until suddenly everything 'comes together'.

After writing a story I let it sit for a few days. After 2-3 days I'll check for grammatical and spelling errors, try and correct the flow if it's not quite right, and amend dialogue to make it more realistic.

Then, after I'm finally happy with a story, and have completed it, I'll stop writing entirely. I'll spend another week or two just sitting back and observing the world, how people interact, etc. There are a multitude of scenes and situations that I have banked in my mind for future use.

So, all in all, it probably takes me about 6-8 weeks to produce a story.

I have a fairly new Literotica account and it would appear that I write more quickly than this, but I had a 'backlog' I uploaded because I never save back-ups and I'm using Literotica as a storage device.
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Old 12-23-2017, 02:14 AM   #14
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From under an hour to over a year, depending. Nothing lately but that may change.
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Old 12-23-2017, 04:06 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamScribble View Post
How long is a piece of string? When I’m writing fiction, I normally write short stories – that is stories with a beginning, a middle, and an end that can be read in a single sitting. Forget all that chapter crap.
.
.
I did once write a story in three hours. It was fabulous. Until I read it the following day.
In my case, the string is over a year long.

Quote:
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From under an hour to over a year, depending. Nothing lately but that may change.
Exactly, but I don't have your reasons.
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Old 12-23-2017, 05:18 AM   #16
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If I have a clear idea of the ending of the story, and some good ideas for the storyline, I can write +1000 words a day. Without that, most stories never end.
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Old 12-23-2017, 05:41 AM   #17
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Shortest? My record for a story of just over 750 words is an hour.

Longest? How about twenty years and still incomplete?

Normal? From initial idea to submitting a completed and edited story can be anything from three days to three weeks - IF I'm writing no other story at the same time. I'm usually writing three or four stories simultaneously.

Record? NaNoWriMo 2003 - 50,000 words in 12 chapters of Flawed Red Silk written, edited and posted on Literotica before the end of November, allowing for posting delays.
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Old 12-23-2017, 06:54 AM   #18
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I tend to write it quickly, then proof and correct it slowly
I think that's the best way to write short erotica. I manage neither the quick writing, nor the careful proof reading.
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Old 12-23-2017, 10:10 AM   #19
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Usually months, or years in some cases. I have written a couple in a few days or a week.

But
I always have several open stories going at once. This is why my characters always have the same names, otherwise I would get too confused, and Eddie is my muse so he is always in the story.

I have ADD so I usually can't just sit and work on one story.
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Old 12-23-2017, 10:37 AM   #20
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That really depends on the characters...

If they let me stick to the script and it was a short story, less than 6,000 words, then one day to write, another couple to edit.

If they don't stick to the script then it's any one's guess. I'm working on one that was supposed to be a short story, less than 5,000 words, but the characters had other things in mind and it now approaching 30,000 words 7 days later.

I actually have 3 of these going at the same time now. They started out as short stories but have wound up as full blown novellas.

My very first novel length item, > 110,000 words, took almost a year to write and then have it edited.
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Old 12-23-2017, 12:10 PM   #21
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Months and months

It usually starts with a scene, or a piece of dialogue that pops into my head that is so compelling that I have to drop everything so I can write it down. Then I look at all the other stuff that I have written down to see if it fits anywhere. Then I write the narrative for that specific moment. After that, I walk away and start figuring out how the protagonists could get to that moment, and all the hurdles and elements of fate that might stand in the way.

Only then (by now weeks have passed) do I start framing out the higher level plot. More time passes as the story forms... Then I usually hit a wall and bin most of it. And then one particular chapter takes me through a beautiful hour where everything flows and suddenly the story is back in the land of the living.

At around this time, a reader sends through something unexpectedly sweet and encouraging and I push through. Once it's done, I leave it for a week before returning with fresh(ish) eyes to start editing.

I wish it moved along more quickly for me (quite envious of those who can produce something in a couple days!), but alas, I am a slow writer.
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Old 12-23-2017, 01:07 PM   #22
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Like most said, it depends.

I wrote my very first fiction short story in about a week 35 years ago. 20 years ago I took over a year to write my very first novel (it was HORRIBLE! and NO you can't read it.). Two years ago I wrote 3 100K+ word novels in 5 months. This year I wrote an 80K novel in 30 days, a 27K word novella (published here on Lit) in 2 weeks, an 8K short story (also published here on Lit) in a week, and I'm 3 weeks and only halfway finished with another novel that should end up in the 50K word count range AND have another on the back burner in the development stage, AND have the plot for yet another sitting in my head at the moment.

So, it depends. It depends on how fast you write, whether you have a clear idea of the plot/characters/etc or not, whether you dedicate yourself to actually sitting down and writing, and whatever roadblocks and obstacles life throws at you to slow you down (like the damn water heater this week, the mandatory wildfire evacuation a couple of weeks ago, no power for 4 days, and so on).
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Old 12-23-2017, 01:11 PM   #23
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I used to put out one story a week but then again, I tend to write long stories.

Over the last year it has only been a couple of stories. I've been head down in a big mainstream project. Ten novels at around half a million words total. That should all be finished in another month or so, hopefully.

Maybe then I can get some of the hundreds of half finished stories I have on my hard drive finished.
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Old 12-23-2017, 01:32 PM   #24
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I used to be able to answer that by saying anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. But lately it's more like 3-4 years.
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Old 12-23-2017, 01:34 PM   #25
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Record - I completed the first draft of "Ride No More" in around an hour, I believe. Probably only spent half that time tweaking the ending during the editing process.

I started "Sisters of the Mists" in 2007, and it's still incomplete. I'm only getting around to adding new chapters to it in the new year after a frustrating 5 year lapse of my muse.

"Lowborn" was about 5 years from first word on paper to posting. "Jackin' Jill" was 3.

Average for a longer story ( over 10k words ) is a couple of months. Average for an RR story is probably a month, because they typically clock in between 5-10k words.

Some of the quickies I'm really excited about will finish in a week if my hours at work aren't horrendous. When I have a week of vacation, an idea I'm excited about, and it's less than 10k words, I typically finish a first draft in a couple of days.

It's all over the place.
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