Friday, May 23, 2008

is 425,000 words too long?

You receive a submission letter that excites you. Gripping story, interesting characters—the works. A “new voice” story. As you read the letter, you conclude that you’ve got to see a partial.

Until. You note that it is a debut novel and it’s 425,000 words long. What do you do?

250 words per page is generally considered to be standard. This means that your novel is 1,700 pages long. I would have to love this letter like a blanket in freezing weather and no shelter to even consider asking to see it.

3 comments:

Vivien V. said...

Yikes, that's a lot of words! I think my fingers would paralyze if I wrote that much!

Anonymous said...

What if it were 425,000 words but could be split into a trilogy?

Jeff said...

I've often seen that figure of 250 words per page as standard, but aren't most novels actually more like 300 - 350 words per page when printed? (And sometimes up to 400). I just wonder where the 250 number comes from?