Please indulge this word-count newbie for just a few moments.
What should I use to determine word count? Is Microsoft Word’s word counter a good measure?
Here’s why I ask: I’ve been told manuscript pages usually contain about 250 words per page. But I’ve got one-inch margins all around, and when I highlight a page in Microsoft Word the count generally comes to between 290 – 350 words.
(I’m guessing this is one of the reasons why word count is better than page count.)
I know what you’re thinking: I’m not supposed to worry about length until I’ve completed the manuscript, because the book will be as many words as it takes to tell my story. But measuring progress helps me feel productive, and I’d like to articulate that progress in words.
So, thoughts? How do you measure word count?
UPDATE: Thanks to one of my readers, I’ve figured out why my pages amount to more than 250 words — I use Times New Roman font. The 250-words per page count apparently applies to Courier New.
So I’m going with Microsoft Word’s count — I’ve written about 50,000 words. Assuming my travel memoir falls in my goal window of 85,000 – 90,000 words, that means I’m more than halfway there!