I sneezed out 77,000 words of The Emris: Lost in just over two months, and I project about 15,000 left to wrap up the novel. This being my first serious work, I knew I would be editing many times over, until it was right. I got the idea down onto paper, which is important for me. I can fix, polish, and rework an idea until it resembles the wonderful story I envisioned. But this part is slow and difficult. It is another test of a writer's mettle to persist in the work needed to get the story right.
As the back of my mind chews on the final conflict scene and denouement, I have embarked on the most intensive editing that I've done yet. It starts at the beginning, and the beginning was weak. It was rewritten, and much was cut. 74,000 words.
Feedback on a short story from one critique group is feeding back into those remaining 74,000. The verbiage was tightened. Unnecessary adverbs were expunged along with other useless things. 72,000 words. New material is added to expand and strengthen existing scenes; back up we go to 74,000. I'm still in the first four chapters; 19 to go.
I see the oscillating word count, but I am not afraid. As I go through, not for the second time, but for the Nth, I begin to see the story I love, unfolding as it should.