Friday, 19 April 2013

Q is for Quality vs Quantity

How do you measure a successful writing session?
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles /


You may have spent hours or just a few minutes on your wip, and your word count may be low, but what you have written is of a high standard. It may take you longer to complete a first draft, but you will likely need fewer edits.


You have produced a high word count and will get through a first draft much faster, however the writing will need heavy editing.

For me, I prefer to go for quantity. Aiming for quality in a first draft is a sure-fire way to send my internal editor into overdrive and block me up completely and nothing would ever get finished. As both Nora Roberts and Jodi Picoult have said - "You can't edit a blank page." By shutting the internal editor off and just writing down as much as I can I do at least end up with a finished draft that I can then let my editor loose on.

I was talking this over with my brother last night (he's a writer too) and he said something true that I am sure you have all heard at one time - quantity breeds quality. The more we write, the better the writing becomes.

What do you think? Do you aim for quality in a writing session, or just get down as much as possible and work on the quality later? Let me know in the comments below, I'd love to hear from you.

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