Monday, January 16, 2017

Writing Short

Books seem to be getting smaller, at least that is what I have been reading. Many traditional publishers, in their author note sections, are still listing word count by genre the same as they did many years ago, but they may be a bit out of touch by doing this. I recently looked at a book series on Amazon where each book was less than 30 pages. I am not sure that would be considered a book, not in my world anyway. It does seem to me that the new book may be closer to 200 pages than the 400 in the past. Looks like 100-page books are also doing well. Now when buying an eBook, I check the page count. I don’t mind paying .99 cents for a good short story, but am against paying several dollars for a book that is less than 30 pages.

Are We Still Reading? - Maybe the scientists who tell us all the texting and instant gratification of video games are on to something. Kids do not sit around and read, not much anymore. Many parents still require kids to read 20-30 minutes each evening, kind of like the music practice in my growing up days.

My new western novel, is complete at 237 pages, with a few pages of front matter and some author stuff and a pitch for my other books, in the back, this would make the actual book around 230 pages. I tend to write shorter chapters, which is the new wave in fiction, and this one has 50 chapters. That would make each chapter four or five pages long. As a reader I like to quit at the end of a chapter, short chapters make it easy.
By the way, for my format, I use a 6 X 9 book layout and size 12 font. This lets my book come in at just under, 50,000 words. Many authors suggest 11 as a better font size, but I use what is easy for me to read, and I like it slightly larger. I also use 1.15 spacing, for ease of reading. It costs a bit more this way, as it adds pages, but I like the look and feel of books printed this way.

Trying for a short - Not sure if I can do it, but I am going to try to do some shorter books, we used to call them novellas. I will shoot for 20,000 to 25,000 words, might be fun. I already have an idea, although it may be lame, as are many of my early ideas, I like it so far.

Enjoy the week and keep reading and keep writing, only keep it short.

Today’s photos from two great hikes over the weekend.
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