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The deal with the word count

Okay, you know how sometimes you’ll write something on one piece of software, like on your iPad or whatever, and it will say you have 3100 words and you are incredibly pleased and happy with yourself and you stop writing because your goal for the day was only 3000? And then you get home and upload it and open it in Word and discover that oh no, you only wrote 2800 words? And then you have to stay up and write another 200 and it sucks? (I mean, for people who make word-count-for-the-day goals it sucks. I know people who would rather die, but it’s the only way I can make it to the end of big projects). Or you were hired to write something that is 2000 words, and it’s only until you paste it into Word that you find out it’s only 1940 words, and the temptation is to go through and put “really, really” in front of every adjective). One solution is to only write in Word in the first place, but I use a much cheaper app on my ipad, and I like using Scrivener to organize projects, and whatever, Word is not the boss of me.
So, I figured out (a couple of, anyway) the reasons that different softwares don’t get the same results when they count words: Some of them count hyphenated words as two words. And some of them count anything after an APOSTROPHE as a new word. Like, “Can’t” is two words. Or “They’re” or “aunt’s.” Which is insane and evil because why would anyone want that?
Obviously you can’t try to just not type with contractions because then your writing will be dreadful. A better way is just to know ahead of time how your software counts. Type a sentence with an apostrophe: “my best friend’s wedding” and see if it counts as that as four or five words. Then see if tried-and-true is one word or three. Once you know, you can factor that in. Counts apostrophes? Multiply your word count by .97 and you’ll be closer. Counts hyphens? Multiply by .99.
A similar problem: When you’re writing screenplays, you generally count by pages rather than words. I discovered that the software I was using to write on my iPad was saying I had way more pages than I had. It took me quite a while to realize that because there’s no zoom feature and my eyes are old, I’d changed the font to be sixteen point rather than the standard twelve point. I can’t really blame the software for that one, I know.