500 words

I’m writing some essays for a work-related certification today.  It’s not quite as much fun as writing fiction, but it is writing, so I can’t complain.  The biggest difference, besides the content, is the word limit.

Each essay has to be 500 words or less.

Now, 500 words might sound like a lot to non-writers, but let me put it in perspective for you.  During NaNoWriMo, we aim to write about 1500 words a day.  This post, which isn’t terribly long, is 175 words long.

The limit on the essays has two conflicting roles when it comes to how I write.  First, it gives me a goal; if my essay isn’t long enough, I write some more.  Second, in contrast, it puts a cap on my ideas.  So far I haven’t had so much to say that I’ve felt like the limit keeps me from expressing it all, but it makes for an interesting possibility as I keep working.

A word limit means that I get to be creative with my writing, and also potentially creative with my editing!