Novel Length

I don’t have an update for you today.  I promise I’ll get some sort of update for you tomorrow.  Today, instead, I want your thoughts on novel length.  I’ve spent the last three days in solitude and have pumped 5,000 words into a new novel.  With the creative juices flowing, I don’t plan on limiting what comes out.  Still, I can’t help but think about the possibility of getting something published some day.  With that in mind, I know full well that novel length is important.

My first novel was far too long for a Young Adult Novel (or any novel by someone who isn’t already published).  Fire Saviors was 123,000 Words.  My second novel–The Saints–was a publishable length at 76,000 Words.  Too bad it was a sequel.  My third novel was far too short for literary/mystery fiction: Only 46,000 Words.  Although I don’t consider word length all that important compared to content, I know it plays a role.  In order to give my new novel  a solid chance at being picked up, I know it needs to fall within a certain length.

I’m pretty sure that length is about 70,000-100,000.  Ideal length is somewhere around 70,000-80,000.  I want to know what everyone else thinks on the matter.  Do you even think about things like this when you write?  I don’t actively think about selling my work as I write.  I know what I need to do to get published on most levels…I just can’t bring myself to write for anyone but me.  That’s why I have a blog that may–some day–make it harder for a publisher to take me on.

~Richard

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