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

An Author’s Perspective

I’ve been writing since 8th grade.  Since I am now 23 years old, that means I’ve been writing for about ten years.  When I was young, I used to post my writing on sites such as FictionPress.com.  As my college years passed by, I discovered the warning from publishers everywhere.  They are all the same.  BEWARE: IF YOU POST YOUR WRITING ONLINE, YOU MAY COMPROMISE YOUR ABILITY TO GET PUBLISHED SOME DAY.  Now I realize the irony.  They are trying to control my writing before I have even sell a single piece.

Writer, editor, agent, and publisher alike understand that the market is changing.  Although I would like to make a living off of my writing, the changes at hand make that incredibly complex.  But I stand by my fellow writers in the idea you will hear far too often.  I WOULD RATHER HAVE PEOPLE ENJOY MY WRITING THAN MAKE A SINGLE DOLLAR OFF OF IT.  It’s a simple as that.  I will post most of my writing on this site.  If you enjoy my writing, there are links where you can purchase my novels.  I have set the price so that I make no money. The novel goes straight from printing to your house (Lulu.com is incredible).

I enjoy writing on every level.  I started by writing poetry.  It developed into flash fiction and short stories.  By the age of twenty, I completed my first novel.  But creative writing is not always the focus.  I have written dozens of columns to local papers.  I maintain a movie review blog, a blog about minimalism, and a music review blog.  I also ghostwrite on a site called Elance.  Links to all of this can be found throughout this website.

If you enjoy my work, let me know.  If you want to commission a piece, send me an email.  If you want to purchase a book, just follow the link.  My goal is simply to make myself a better writer.  A lot of that has to do with writing every day.  Most of it, however, has to do with experiencing life.  If you have nothing to write about, it doesn’t matter what kind of writer you are.

~Richard