Estimating word count when handwriting

Estimating word count when handwriting

0 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 2, 2007
Location: Arroyo Grande, California
Posts: 20
Posted on:
Mar 13, 2008 - 19 58

There are several ways you can estimate word count when writing by hand, what is your way?

Black Snow
51,848 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 2, 2006
Location: France
Posts: 704
Posted on:
Mar 13, 2008 - 23 27

Usually, I count the number of words per line on a few (about 6) lines, and I use it to calculate my average words per line. Then, I multiply it by the number of line in a page to have the number of words per page.

Bleen BooleyGlowing Halo
50,833 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 2, 2006
Location: Sacramento CA
Posts: 350
Posted on:
Mar 14, 2008 - 00 25

I count one whole page, then multiply by the number of pages.


matt_fishwickGlowing Halo
65,395 / 50,000
Joined: Nov 5, 2007
Location: Wigan or Bromsgrove, UK
Posts: 487
Posted on:
Mar 14, 2008 - 01 41

I don't estimate - I put a marker over every 50th word as I go and then total them up at the end of the day. It takes virtually no time and at least I'm doing something when I a stuck for something to write.


16,000 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 22, 2007
Location: ACT
Posts: 124
Posted on:
Mar 14, 2008 - 15 49

I estimate when I have about 100 words and then I actually count them!!!

CieriaGlowing Halo
64,046 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 2, 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 106
Posted on:
Mar 28, 2008 - 15 22

I write in a A6 notebook. I count at the end of every page. Though normally each page is about 100 words.

55,232 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 1, 2006
Location: The Emerald City
Posts: 948
Posted on:
Mar 28, 2008 - 16 59

I average how many words per page with a sample of about 3 pages, and I multiply the averge by how ever many pages I have.

55,015 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 2, 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 595
Posted on:
Mar 28, 2008 - 17 18

I actually count. I write totals for each paragraph in the margin, and then add them up for a total on each page. Then I put down a running total at the top of about every 4th-6th page. I usually just go back and count whenever I get stuck.

But now I has a laptop. So no more writing by hand. Although it does have its drawbacks, like if I wake up in the middle of the night I can't write without the laptop making the really loud & weird noise it makes at startup and waking everyone in the house up. And I usually don't have time to wait for it to start up in the morning during those 5 extra minutes.


13,000 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 2, 2006
Location: Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA
Posts: 23
Posted on:
May 3, 2008 - 19 13

When I count, which I don't always do off season, but I usually do anyway, I count every word, write the running total at the beginning of each new line, and then write the total for each page at the top of the next page.


0 / 50,000
Joined: Oct 26, 2006
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 950
Posted on:
May 5, 2008 - 22 27

On college ruled 81/2 x 11 sheets of paper I average out at about 150 words per side of a page. Except for the first page of each chapter, it's about 125 (due to extra spacing). Then dialogue heavy pages I estimate out at about 75-100 words (depending on how short each characters' lines are). Then I count how many of each type I have, multiply accordingly then add these numbers to get the total.

Granted, this doesn't give me a precise count, but it's great for shorter pieces when I'm aiming for a range (say 4-6K words), as long as the number I come up with is somewhere near the middle of that target, then I'm fine.

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