Saturday, February 4, 2023

How Many Words In Your Word Count?

 I decided to do some research and add to my usual go-to Nebula Awards Word Count. That's here:

Every editor has a different word count boundary for whatever length of story from flash fiction to novel.

I looked several places and came up with this, in living color:

I put together word count guidelines from several sources [note, these are flexible]:

Micro Fiction: 55-300 words

Picture Book Ages 4-5 500 words

Picture Book Age 6 550 words

Picture Book Ages 7-8 600 words

Children’s Chapter Book Age 7 1000-4999 words

Children’s Chapter Book Age 8 5000-10,000 words

Flash Fiction: 6-1,000 words

                Also called microfiction

Short-Short story: 1,001-5,000

                Some set lower limit at 750 words

Short Story: 5001-7,500 words

Novelette: 7,501-17,500 words

Novella: 17,501-40,000 words

Middle Grade Book Age 8 20,000 Words

Middle Grade Book Age 9 25,000 Words

Middle Grade Book Age 10 30,000 Words

Novel: 40,000 Technically

Middle Grade Book Age 11 40,000 Words

Middle Grade Book Age 12 50,000 Words

Novel: 50,000 Minimum

Young Adult Novel Teen: 50,000-70,000 words

YA Science Fiction 50,000-80,000 words

Romance: 50,000-100,000 words

Novel: 55,000+ words

Novel: <70,000 Too Short

Thriller: Suspense. Mystery: 70,000-90,000 words

Novel: 70,000-79,999 Maybe Too Short-Probably Fine

Novel: 80,000-89,999 Totally Cool

Non-fiction: Many subgenres-check.

Memoirs: 80,000-90,000 words

Science fiction: 90,000-120,000 words

Fantasy: 90,000-120,000 words

Novel: 90,000-99,999 Generally Safe

Historical: ~100,000 words

Novel: 100,000-109,999 Maybe Too Long-Probably Fine

Novel: 110,000+ Too Long

Super Novel: 120,000-300,000 words Way Too Long


Short It’s Ok

Medium It’s Ok

Novel: Too Short Romance: It's OK

Optimum Length Novel: It’s OK

Longer Still Acceptable Length Novel

Getting Too Long Novel: Maybe Too Long

Novel: Too Long

Super Novel: Too Long

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