Every now and then I look back on the Unmentionables that are my first drafts. I see the path of my writing and, though it has sloped a little way up the hill of mastering the craft, I see I have come a long way.
As I thought about this more, I wondered. So, if I have come “far”, how does a writer measure that exactly? Better yet, How do I, as a writer, measure progress?
The answer for you could be simple. It could be that you now have 30,000 words, and you had 5,000 a year ago. It could be that your vocabulary has grown tremendously, that your scenes of harrowing danger and swashbuckling duels are now believable, or that your love scenes are now devoid of most of their cheesiness.
I believe it is a smattering collection of these things. I see that my writing is cleaner. I see that I don’t use that that often, (pun intended). My words are more diverse and the dialogue is smoother. However, I am at a loss. I know writers learn by doing. They learn by mastering the craft in order to abide by the laws and break them at their will.
But, How do you measure the progress of your writing?