Say it’s your first time writing a novel, and you’re a smidge behind. On the 15th of November, you should’ve hit 25,000 words.
Do not despair.
Also: For those who’ve burned vacation time, dumped their significant others and sent the kids to boarding school, because you’re going to hit 50k if it kills you, I say this: dance not the dance of victory, because 50k isn’t actually a novel. It’s a novella. You want to hit 80k or 90k to be safe.
However: None of this really matters. At all.
Related post: Six easy ways to improve #NaNoWriMo
For your first draft, word counts mean nothing
I don’t care if you’ve gotten stuck at 12,000 words or you’re already finished with your 194,000 epic involving the king of the orcs and the vampire mermaid who loves him.
Anybody new to writing a novel, of whatever genre, should ignore the word count demons in this first draft.
Say it with me: It’s a first draft and the word count meants nothing.
The word count means nothing.
One more time: I’ve got 99 problems and a word count ain’t one.