Is that your final answer?

Being an analytical sort of guy, I decided to see exactly where I stood should I decide to publish my novel as a series instead of one volume. The results didn’t really surprise me, because of the way I developed the story.  As you can see, Books 4, 5, and 6, based on the word count, already qualify as novels.  That’s because I started out by writing the core of the novel, and then fleshed out the events leading to and resulting from the action.  That fleshing out process also included reformatting and rearranging to enhance the flow of the action. I think that by publishing the books as a series, in the course of preparing the manuscripts for publication, I’ll be able to bring each of the shorter volumes into their own.  The shortfall in the word count will give me the latitude to expand the shorter storylines without feeling crushed under the weight of a single volume.

Book Series
Book Current Word Count Qualifies as: Goal: Required Word Count
Book 1 39,365 Novella Novel ±700
Book 2 23,900 Novella Novel ±16,100
Book 3 32,579 Novella Novel ±7,500
Book 4 26,653 Novella Novel ±14,000
Book 5 47,189 Novel Novel Okay
Book 6 43,317 Novel Novel Okay
Book 7 43,256 Novel Novel Okay
Book 8 19,454 Novella Novel ±20,600
Book 9 18,845 Novella Novel ±22,000
Book 10 20,594 Novella Novel ±19,500
Book 11 17,007 Novelette Novel ±23,000
Total 332,159 Total shortfall ±123,400

Note: According to the Hugo Awards criteria: a novel is >40,000 words, a novella is 17,500 to 40,000 words, and a novelette is 7,500 to 17,500 words.

Only 123,400 words away from eleven novels.

As you can see, Book 1 is almost at the magical 40,000 word mark where it will change from a Novella to a Novel, so I would expect that within a couple of weeks you can expect to see it out on Amazon and Smashwords.  There now that I’ve made the decision I expect you to hold me to it.


About Kevin_Fraleigh

I am a novelist, and much of my writing is predicated on the concept that within each of us is a hole. For some of us, the hole is a divot, shallow and insignificant. But for many of us the hole is a cavern, deep and expansive. We try to fill it with sex or drugs or religion, but the cavern has an insatiable appetite. This is where the dark things live―the things that fill our nightmares. The things that claw at our minds. The things that inspire the stories of horror, madness, and twisted realities. From the depths of that cavern come the seeds of my stories. Won’t you join me in the dark edges of reality? Learn more about me from my blog at You can find my novels at,, and most eBook retailers. You can also read some of my full length short stories at
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5 Responses to Is that your final answer?

  1. Catana says:

    I wouldn’t want to discourage anyone, but the Hugo Awards criteria isn’t standard. Novels are generally considered to start at about 70,000 words. If you price those short pieces as if they were novels, you’re going to have pissed off readers, or simply lose sales because people know better.

    • bert1482 says:

      Catana – That’s a very good point. Although I haven’t found an authoritative reference for it, 70,000 words is probably a better figure to meet reader’s expectations. The Hugo Awards criteria is a minimum. Of course, the other side of the coin is that more doesn’t necessarily mean better. The quality of the reader experience is what draws readers back.

  2. Catana says:

    I agree that quality is the criterion for establishing a readership. It’s just better not to offer something as a novel that isn’t. I’ve seen a good many complaints on sites like Goodreads that the reader had been led to believe that a book was novel-length, when it wasn’t. Personally, I’m often disappointed by novellas because they aren’t long enough for the characters and plot to be fully developed.

    Instead of knocking yourself out to expand all those stories (unless they really do need to be more fully developed), why not combine some of them. The ones that are only around 18,000 words would be considered long short stories by most readers. Definitely not long enough for a series.

    Here are a couple of links you might want to check out:

  3. cjsand says:

    How about some teaser/excerpt to whet people’s interest on here?

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