How long does it take to write the first draft of a book?


In this little article I want to share with you how long it took me to write the first draft of a book containing 100 advices.

How long did it take?

The short answer is 34 hours and 46 minutes. That's the time it took me to write the first draft of 100 advices. In the image below you can see the details from my time tracking app:



During these hours I didn't only write. I also illustrated each draft and scheduled it as an article that will published on the Service Design Magazine.

Why is it so fast

It is possible to write a first draft so quickly for several reasons.

First, I already had all the content ideas written down. That adds about 3 to 4 hours work. Second, I'm obviously writing small pieces where every piece is just one idea developed around a little story. Third, this is not the first time I do it. As I have a lot of practice writing books and courses I might be faster than someone who does it for the first time. Finally, the fourth reason is that these are first drafts that I don't proofread or improve. I write them, pass them through a spell checker and done. 

This is a surprise

It's interesting for me to see that in fact it doesn't take so much time to come up with the first draft. As I'm working over a few month it's hard to figure out how much time you spend if you don't look at the time tracking data.

So could I write the first draft of a book like this in one week? Absolutely not! Doing this more than 4 hours a day would drive me crazy. Writing such books isn't really a pleasure for me. It's. hard work and it takes a lot of mental energy. I believe that if I did more than 4 hours of writing per day, I would be much slower.

What book?

I have now written the first drafts of volumes 2 and 3 of my books in the series "Service Design Principles". If you are interested in getting the book before everyone else with a coupon, you can register to the newsletter.


— Written on July 15, 2019

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