With Camp NaNoWriMo coming up, I’m starting to get hyped up about word count (as one does in NaNo-land). Finding writing resources motivates me like no other, so off I went to my trusty friend Google. A minute later, I struck gold.
I was already amazed that she had prepared different themes for us to choose from. The one I chose was the Huntsman theme (depicted above) but there are also others such as Steampunk, Pirate, Forest Fairy and more. A talented artist, Svenja Liv drew these illustrations herself and designed a massively comprehensive spreadsheet that I am in awe of.
How comprehensive? Let’s take a quick run through of the key features, shall we? I’m quite new to the sheets myself so I strongly suggest visiting Svenja Liv’s site to try them for yourself!
- Not just a one off thing – the Excel spreadsheet file comes in a Workbook that spans all twelve months. Each month has its own spreadsheet.
- But can be used for just one month – handy for NaNoWriMo! Also useful for setting short term goals for yourself rather than procrastinating on long term ones. The maker has kindly included instructions to help you with these settings.
- Choose your unique target word count – anything goes!
- Updated live – you get to see the fruits of your labour immediately. That, and you don’t have to do a single complex techie thing – simply enter in the numbers and voila!
- Real time – the June spreadsheet really does begin in June, and the spreadsheet is so smart it knows this. Gives me a strange sense of companionship.
- Tells you if you are on track to meet your target – a status bar at the top will let you know the average number of words you need to hit each day to meet your special number.
- Shows percentage complete – I love this feature for its holistic view of your project. It reminds you that all your words don’t just stand alone; they add up to something. Seeing that percentage inch higher is a wonderful incentive.
- Graphs – a pie chart and a column graph (or is a histogram? Blergh, maths) in the header visually inform you of your progress. NaNo-ers will recognise the column graph – it shows your daily word count against the predicted average. This way you easily tell if you are meeting the quota.
- Flexible – the creator has simplified our job by only requiring us to enter a few fields (marked in dark blue), but variety in those few fields can greatly customise your spreadsheet. For example, you may be aiming to finish your novel in less than a year. By October, for example. To make the stats reflect this more accurately, you can go to the November and December pages and pledge a 0 monthly word count. That’s my quick solution anyway!
- Did I mention free and nice on the eyes?
Needless to say, I’m a big fan of this resource. I realise being halfway through the year will affect how useful this spreadsheet is to your work, but it’s still worth it. Especially if you’re doing Camp NaNo with me! To those who dislike the idea of word counts (I know you exist, and that’s perfectly okay!) you might want to skip this resource. Or try it out and be converted. Muhahahaha!
I encourage you to visit Svenja Liv’s site and take a look around. If you are an artist, she also has some nice tutorials for you. If you like her work, please drop her a word of thanks. I’m off to do that myself! If you really like what you see, consider leaving a small donation to help with website charges.
Here’s the link once again: http://svenjaliv.com/category/resources/spreadsheets/
As always, all the best with everyone’s writing!