How many Words?

Every new writer always asks the question of how many words should I write for my story? There are various answers and positions on how many, but overall it really depends on you. I was no different when writing my manuscript. I questioned how many words should I aim for, but when starting with your first draft there shouldn’t be an emphasis on word counts – just writing the story should be what you are concerning yourself with.

Though once that first draft is done, and you congratulate yourself, it is time for the next draft to be written where more concentration is on expaninding the story, fleshing some scenes out, more dialouge, and character development. This is usually when I pay attention on if my story is too short or too long. It is usely too short, sometimes.

National Novel Writing Month requires its novels to be around 50 000 words. But there are no firm rules. Whereas a novella is aimed to be around 17 000 to 40 000 words, and short stories under 10 000 words. It really depends on how many words it takes for you, as the writer to spin that beautiful story. However, for curious sake lets take a look at some word counts.

An adult novel, contemporary literature, around 80 000 to 90 000 words.

Science fiction and fantasy novels, are usually around the 90 000 words to over 100 000 word count.

Crime fiction 90 000 to 100 000 words

Mystery/Thrillers/Suspense 70 000 to 90 000 words

Paranormal 75 000 to 90 000 words

Historical 100 000 words

Young Audlt Fiction 50 000 to 80 000 words

These word counts are mostly guidelines to new writers, and basically set the bar for where the word count might be in the genre you’ve written. There are some books that do not conform to these guidelines, but it is nice to have a rough idea. It really depends on how many words it takes for you, as the writer to spin that beautiful story.

JMR

 

 

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