Now available is the spreadsheet that I’ve been using to record my statistics for The Rebel Queen. (It’s free, which means use at your own risk, no liability accepted. Always back up your files :-)). Writing Stats Spreadsheet v1
While it’s highly probable that I’ll make improvements to it later, I don’t envision doing any work on it for the foreseeable future. The spreadsheet is designed to keep track of word count in both draft and revision versions of a story. The Excel spreadsheet contains the following worksheets:
There’s really not much to see here. You can enter the name of your writing project, and it checks that all of your scenes have a point-of-view character assigned.
As the name would suggest, it shows some basic stats about the writing project. One of the cool things that I’ve recently added is the concept of an “estimated reading time”.
While the estimated reading time is of less value here (whole book), the value comes out in the per-chapter analysis. My new-found opinion is that I want chapters ideally to be 15-20 minutes long, ideal length for a commute. (Though it strikes me as I write this; commutes vary).
While the table on this worksheet could be deemed ‘information overload’, it is important to be able to monitor word count reduction at a scene-by-scene level. Also on the stats page is a way-too-small chart which shows chapter and scene comparisons between revision and draft.
A more useful by-chapter view of the world: scene count, word count, estimated reading time and percentage change between revision and draft.
Draft Scene Info and Revision1 Scene Info
These two worksheets are near identical. They both possess a table where you specify chapter number, scene number, a scene name, a point of view and the word count.
(Ignore the bad scene names; I don’t want this to be a spoiler for The Rebel Queen). The scene names for the same scene must be the same in both draft and revision worksheets, but they can be in a different order (different chapter or scene numbers). Also, the revision worksheet can contain new scenes or absent scenes. (That’s what revision is all about). Filling out the Point of View is easy, with a drop-down list.
This worksheet contains a list, and summary of the characters who get a point of view in your story. (Non point-of-view characters aren’t included).
This worksheet is also a recent addition, which also has the benefit of being aesthetically pleasing. I discussed this in a recent post on character balance.
If you have any questions or problems using the spreadsheet, please add a comment below.