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Anyone written a novel, if so how many words?
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Lavenderdays · 11/12/2018 14:36

I haven't finished my novel yet but was hoping it was going to be around 70,000 words; currently if things continues like this it is going to be a bit less. It doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things because the book is primarily written for me and not the mass public and I don't want to add things to it just for the sake of it. Just wondering what sort of length novel, others have written?

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TippetyTapWriter · 11/12/2018 20:27

The first was 95 which is what I was aiming for. The second that I'm still wrestling with is just under 70k and will lose more in the editing. I don't know what to do with it as it should be 90+ for the genre so I'm worried it'll be unpublishable. If I ever get it finished properly. I have a third half-written that's at 45k so ought to hit 90k when finished. I hope.

It's weird though because the shorter one feels like a much fuller book than the other two. I don't know how I could find another 20k.

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Lavenderdays · 11/12/2018 23:08

Thanks Tippety, I read your post with interest. I would love my book to be publishable but it won't be at this rate - about 62,000 I guestimating by the time editing takes place etc, so I'm probably in a similar boat to you, with your second book, Tippety. Writing this book has been a hobby first and foremost and I was going to spend the money to get it printed, book cover done etc, because I have spent so long writing it and because it means quite a bit to me personally but it's a shame it doesn't quite hit the 70,000 mark (I have edited quite ruthlessly and cut out most things that detract from the story/goes off on a tangent). It would probably need another sub plot running through it to accomplish the 70,000 words but I like the pace of the book, I think a lot of in depth-scene setting etc. would distract from what is essentially quite a gritty storyline; it's strongest element is probably the dialogue. Anyone else experienced this; what did you do, if anything to resolve it? I'm thinking most publishable novels are around the 70,000+ mark, anyone experienced anything different?

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TippetyTapWriter · 12/12/2018 20:21

That's very similar to me! I'd also need to add some subplots and tease out the inner lives of secondary characters, explore some other themes etc. I have some ideas how to do this but it would become a different book and I'm not sure I want to do it. I guess in my heart of hearts I don't, because I've been procrastinating for ages. I deliberately wrote it tight and focused and I like the way it reads. Shorter books do get published. Lots of my absolute favourite books are short, but they'd be classed as literary fiction and mine isn't! A published author at a workshop basically told me than in my genre they'd be very unlikely to consider anything much under 90k especially as a debut. I'm finding it hard to get the motivation to edit etc when I feel it's a dead duck... but I also find it hard to admit defeat and let go of it entirely. I'm going to work on something else for a bit and see how I feel ... though I admit I've been doing that on and off for four years. Oh dear.

Anyway, whatever you do, definitely finish yours. It might well be small but perfect, or you might suddenly have inspiration for a whole new subplot you can weave in. But definitely finish it. Good luck!

My other thought was to try and turn mine into a screen play. A tightly focused, well-paced dialogue-heavy story might lend itself to that?! Short stories and novellas tend to make much better films than novels I think.

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Lavenderdays · 13/12/2018 14:37

Hi Tippety
Yes, I've also written in a tight and focused way and I like the pace of it, I believe it would detract from the underlying theme of the book if I didn't do this and went into rambling enth degrees. I thought my book was going to be a lot longer but then went back recently and hacked out loads of rambling paragraphs = improved the pace and flow of the book but word count now at about 63,000 ish instead of the original nearly 70,000. One of two things will happen - I will either leave the book just as it is (most likely with one or two minor tweaks) or somehow another sub plot will come to me. I don't think it would do the story any justice if I go into a lot of descriptive detail about characters or scene setting.
My story is probably more suitable for a screen play but one way or another, I am determined to get a cover and spine on that writing of mine just for my own satisfaction if nothing else!
I find a little bit of magic gets sprinkled onto my story when I edit, now looking forward to writing the final chapter and cracking on with the editing stage - good luck with your book too Tippety, I hope inspiration comes to you. x

Has anyone else's book been published with a low(ish) word count or is anyone writing a book that is coming in at a lower word count than originally anticipated?

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Witchend · 13/12/2018 18:28

Mine come in around about 50k because I'm writing middle grade.

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Lavenderdays · 13/12/2018 21:03

I think that's about the expected norm for middle grade isn't it Witchend?
It's interesting to hear what others are writing and how much, it feels like it has been a real labour of love and consumed countless hours for me to get to the 63,000 word mark (not quite there but almost).

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Witchend · 13/12/2018 22:02

I think that's about the expected norm for middle grade isn't it Witchend?
Yes it is. Which is why I'm glad I'm aiming for MG as I seem to end up around that level without trying. Not sure what that says about my writing though. Grin

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