How Long Does It Take to Write A Book (New Author Guide)?
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How Long Does It Take to Write A Book (New Author Guide)?

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  • July 3, 2023
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  • 7 min read


Writing a book takes time, effort, creativity, and determination. Writing is a challenging and gratifying intellectual and emotional journey, from the initial flash of inspiration to the last flourish of the last line.

It’s a common question among aspiring authors and readers: “How long does it take to write a book?” Consider the myriad factors that might impact the creative process to unravel this puzzle.

See how time, creativity, and motivation influence the journey from a blank page to a finished book.

What’s The Average Book Writing Time?

For more insights on book writing and tips on efficient writing, you can check our blog post about What Is Amazon Choice vs Best Seller?. Most writers take about 180 days, or about six months, on average, to write a book. Most of the time, it takes authors between 4 and 8 months to finish a book. You can write much faster than that, though.

Now that you know how to figure out when your book should be done, let’s look at how long books usually take different authors on average. Many things can affect how long a book takes. You can explore our article on Audible Alternatives: Top Audiobook Apps for Listening to Books for more insights into books and reading.

The normal person writing a book for the first time can expect to spend between 4 months and more than a year on it. Writing a book takes a long time, but there are always ways to speed up the process.

Considering everything above, most people write only a few times a week, especially if they have a family and a full-time job.

So, let’s break this down a little more for the normal person who doesn’t have time to write every day and doesn’t have our system for getting more done in less time:

  • 30,000 – 50,000 words: 500 words three days a week is between 4 and 7 months
  • 50,000 – 80,000 words: 500 words three days a week is between 7 and 11 months
  • 80,000 – 100,000 words: 500 words three days a week equals 11 months to 1 year and more.

Time-Saving Ways to Write a Book More Efficiently

Here are our best tips on how to write a book faster so it takes less time.

1- Set an Important Deadline

Deadlines help you finish your book by getting you into the habit of writing every day. It also tells you to work daily to reach short-term and long-term goals.

But you won’t succeed if you pick time out of thin air. They have to be in place for your book to do well.

As you can see, if you write an average of 1500 words per week, it can take you anywhere from 4 months to over a year to finish your book if you need a better plan.

2- Setting Goals for Word Count

Setting word count goals is a great way to speed up writing. As training breaks do, setting word count goals will pace how many words to write daily.

First, you must know how many words a book in your field has. Once you know this, you can determine how much you must write daily to meet your goal.

By giving yourself these guidelines for success, you will not only be more likely to reach your goals, but you will also see your writing better.

3- Developing Accountability

Getting a book written requires being responsible. Whether you’re writing a storybook, a picture book, or a nonfiction book, you’ll need to set up some responsibility. For additional tips on writing and accountability, you can read our blog post about BehinThe Scenes: Unveiling the World of a Copy Editor.

  • Find a writing partner and agree to hold each other responsible by sharing their goals and ensuring they are met.
  • Try joining a group of people who write together and help keep each other on track.
  • Put your money where your mouth is by promising to give X dollars to a group you dislike or a friend or family member if you don’t meet your writing goals.
  • If you’ve tried these other ideas and still can’t reach your goals, you should hire American Author House to help you stay on track.

4- Planning/Outlining

Make a plan and an outline before you start writing. It is another great way to write your story faster.

  • Things that go into planning are:
  • Putting together character sketches
  • Figuring Out Character Paths
  • Taking a Look at Point of View
  • Examining Why People Do What They Do
  • Outlining is all about turning your book idea into a story that makes sense, so you can see where the plot goes. This can be vague and should be flexible, but having a plan can help you stay on track and avoid writing words that won’t be in the final version of your fiction book.

An outline is even more important for nonfiction books because it will help you study, plan, and write.

5- Optimise Writing Conditions

It’s not magic or luck to be able to write a book as quickly as possible. We can speed up our output by changing some things. When you find your favorite place to write, your favorite writing tool, and your most productive time of day, you are more likely to finish your book faster.

It’s a good idea to finish your work as quickly as possible, but you shouldn’t do so at the expense of its quality.

Finding the right mix between speed and quality is key to growing as a writer. If you’d like to learn more about writing conditions and productivity, you can visit our blog post on Writer Salaries: Statistics and Industry Trends 2023.

Even though it might be tempting to write as quickly as possible, remember that if you do, you’ll need more time to fix and improve your work later. It will make the whole process take longer.

A Step-By-Step Plan for Writing A Book

Now that you’ve looked at how long it takes to write in detail, let’s break the process down into a few easy steps.

  • Figure out the type or subject of your next book.
  • Count how many words you want to write.
  • Find out how many words you can usually write in an hour of writing.
  • Determine how many writing sessions you need to reach your word count goal.
  • Plan your working time on a plan, taking into account other obligations.
  • Keep track of your work as you go and make changes as needed

Essential Stages / Elements and Detailed Insights

Stage Details Time Frame
Inspiration The initial flash of inspiration and motivation to start writing. Variable
Writing Process Daily writing habits, setting goals, and planning. 4-8 months
Word Count Goals Setting specific targets for daily or weekly writing. 500 words 3x week
Accountability Partnering, joining groups, or hiring help to stay on track. Throughout
Planning/Outlining Developing character sketches and story arcs. Early stages
Writing Conditions Finding the optimal environment and tools for writing. Continuous
Review and Revision Editing and improving the draft. After first draft


Whether you want to write a book or a work of fiction, it should take no set amount of time. The important thing is to set goals, stick to a plan, and hold yourself responsible. How long it will take should be fine if you want to write. Tell your story if you have one.

That means you should try to reach a good goal. You ought to. But writing a book for the first time will be hard. You’ll face pushback from both inside and outside yourself. There will be stop signs and speed bumps. You may have to change your goals more than once.

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