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Word or Page Count — How Do You Keep Track?

Ugh! I’m sorry this blog post is late. I’ve been on a reading and relaxing binge after I sent off my edits, so blogging apparently slipped my mind. lol

Whenever you go to a publisher’s submission pages, you see their guidelines in what the publisher is looking for. These almost always include word counts, and if you submit a story not within the certain word count, chances are great that they’ll reject it. This alone could make one stare at the word count meter on their word processor, but after a dose of National Novel Writing Month, the problem can lead to word count obsession.

But then, there are authors who go strictly by page count. Some focus more on that than word count, and they’re probably just as bad about having desires to reach their goals.

Someone else I knew said they write the story and then submit it based on the length it happens to turn out at. But is that realistic? How about after you’ve already gotten a book published, and you’re writing the sequel? I don’t think it’s that easy, especially if one is looking to get a novel published. I have to have a goal in front of me to reach for.

How do you handle juggling a good story and fitting it into the word count requirements for submission guidelines? Do you think writers should write the story and submit based on the length it happens to be? I look forward to your thoughts!