It’s time to write your assignment or article and as you ponder your opening sentence (why are they always so hard to think of?), your mind wanders. The paper is supposed to be 1000 words and you find yourself wondering, “how many pages is that? Can I fit 1000 words onto one page? Or can I make my paper look bigger and smarter by tweaking a few things and making those 1000 words stretch out over a few pages? What about characters, and not just words? How many characters are in 1 page of writing? How many words per page can I expect?”
Let’s explore the answer to these questions a little further, shall we? The answer is going to depend on a majority of factors, such as font size, margin size, line spacing, and paragraph size. The medium by which these words are written will also affect page count. School papers, magazines, children’s books, and novels will vary greatly in the number of words per page. I am going to use 1000 words as the general example because it is a very common number of words for most media, such as blog posts, essays, or articles.
First, let’s take a look at what the general rule of thumb is for a standard assignment. Times New Roman font, 1-inch margins, size 12 font, and double spaced is a common requirement for most assignments. When in doubt, ask for clarification when you can. For this paper, each page would contain about 250 words double spaced. Now let’s look at a few possible scenarios you could run into when writing.
Writing a paper by hand:What if you have to write a paper by hand? How do you go about counting the words without having to count the words? Since an automatic word counter won’t be an option, in this case, this guide might come in handy! These are just approximations. Depending on how your paper is structured with paragraphs, headings, and sub-headings, the count will change a bit. A good rule of thumb though is that 1000 handwritten words will be approximately 2-4 pages, depending on if you single or double space it.
|Word Count||Single Spaced Pages||Double Spaced Pages||Approx Character Count|
And so on.
Page count is subjective. For something like a college essay or Word doc, the above chart is fairly accurate. However, there are many instances where it will be way off, and it’s usually because of formatting. Let’s look at a few of those possibilities: Magazines: 1000 words in a magazine could take up one page if it has a tiny font and a few columns. The same 1000 words can take up pretty much the whole magazine too! Add some full-page spread photos, a larger font, and plenty of aesthetic elements, like shapes, and your 1000 words will go far.
Children’s Book: A thousand words in a children’s book is another story. Is it a large book with thin pages and little to no pictures? The 1000 words could fit in just a few pages. Look at a book for small children, however, and you won’t find that many words at all. Some pages may only have 1 or 2 words altogether!
Blog Post or Online Article:A 1000 word blog post, well, that isn’t measured in pages anyways, so we will just leave that be. As a reference though, this article is 1000 words! The formatting of the website you are writing for will affect the space these words take up the most.
Novel: How do authors calculate how thick their new book will be, based on the word count? Of course, formatting plays a big part in this example as well, but just for fun, let’s say an author writes 50,000 words. With single spacing and an average-sized font, this book would be about 100 pages; 200 if it is double spaced.
Now here’s the real question: how fast can you write 1000 words? It depends on a few things, such as whether you are familiar with the topic, if it’s a serious piece or a fluff piece, and what your interest level in the subject is. For example, if I decide to vent an opinion that I’m very passionate about, I could crank out 1000 words in less than half an hour of writing. On the other hand, if the topic is fairly new to me and I have to do any amount of research, I’m going to give myself at least a 4-hour window to write 1000 words. Remember, faster isn’t always better; especially if you are procrastinating writing your paper by reading this article! Give yourself plenty of time to gather your sources, create your outline and leave time for potential times of writer’s block.
At this point, we have looked at this topic from just about every angle, and it’s been fun! Now it’s time to stop procrastinating, buckle down, and get that assignment written!
The best way to get your 1000 words written in good time is to:
- make sure you have 3-4 hours to dedicate to writing,
- get rid of as many distractions as you can, including clutter.
- develop a structured outline. A good rule of thumb for a 1000 word outline is starting with an introduction, choosing 3 points that you can expand on, and finish with a solid conclusion that reiterates the introduction. Each of these sections is only 200 words. It doesn’t seem so intimidating when you break it down like that, does it?
- take a deep breath and start writing! Don’t worry too much about anything except getting the words out at this point.
- Once all of your thoughts are on the screen or the paper, go back over your writing and edit thoroughly for content and grammar,
- do one final word count to make sure you have hit the assignment requirements,
- and that’s it, you’re done.