I'm pretty sure nobody's going to admit to being overblown OR verbose. And let's face it, word limits touted by many publishers for their new acquisitions have a great deal more to do with the commercial realities of the industry than they do with reader preferences or literary quality.
Still - there are those of us who write long, and those who write short. And those who despite the best of intentions, and a wonderful art display on their hospital wall (forgive the poor quality iPhone picture)
...don't write very much of anything at all. (Any NaNoWriMo participant worth their salt would be horrified by my less-than-stellar writing progress this month. On the other hand I've completed some beautiful Swarovski crystal, pearl, and sterling silver wire-wrapped jewelry for my friend to wear at her wedding in July. Does that count?)
So...are you the writer who has a completed first draft at 65,000 words and is then faced with the laborious task of going back through and adding more setting description, more deep point of view, more internal monologue, even whole new scenes in subsequent drafts to make the story more meaty? More satisfying? More appropriate to publisher expectation for its market segment/genre/target audience?
Or are you the writer who completes a first draft of 240,000 words, and is faced with the task of slowly, painfully hacking at least half of that away before calling the job done? Whole scenes axed, characters cut from the narrative, subplots sacrificed, description and dialogue and pretty much everything else ruthlessly trimmed, shortened, truncated?
Maybe you're somewhere in between?
I'd be interested to hear from all the plotters and pantsers out there as to whether outlining before you write (or not) makes a difference in helping you come closer to hitting the right balance first time. I'm assuming if you're someone who does outline before writing, word count targets for each section might be part of that?
I write to a very loose outline much of which never makes it out of my head onto paper..so while I follow a sort of plan, I clearly have well developed pantserish tendencies too!
My last novel just seemed to work out to being around the right length, and I'm not sure how, so the question is whether I'll find my current MG novel (only aiming for 35,000 wds) hits that mark too without serious tweaking.
Where do you find yourself when the first draft's done? Are you a cutter or an embellisher? Or if you're someone who actually gets pretty close to a target word count in the first draft, do you have particular ways of making sure that happens? (I mean, rather than relying on a combination of blind luck and some sort of indefinable intuition like I tend to)