This is actually a serious question. I think there are different types of readers out there. There are some who prefer quicker, shorter novels that they can read in a day or two. And then there are other readers who like novels that are longer, that they can snuggle up with for a week or two, and read at a leisurely pace.
Make note, this post has nothing to do with how readers PACE themselves. I genuinely want to know which kind of book you prefer: long or short.
I think we can agree that some books are TOO long…those exceeding 800 pages tend to push it for me. If the book is part of a series, all right, maybe it’s not such a big deal (in the case of Inheritance by Christopher Paolini). But no one likes picking up a standalone that’s 800 pages long. If the story is 800 pages long, why not split it up into three smaller books? Big books can be daunting.
The benefits of longer books, especially if they are a part of a series, is that those books seem to go way deeper into character development, plot development, cultural issues and formation, descriptive writing, etc. Shorter, fast-paced books seem to avoid these; they are page turners, instead. Don’t get me wrong, there can still be lots of descriptive writing (like in The Lord of the Flies). But shorter novels tend to focus more on actions, without taking the time to describe the setting.
I’m currently wondering about how I should form my own book series, Elithius. Before, when my series was called “The Golden Lands”, I had planned about 18 volumes of novella-sized stories. No volume was going to exceed 200 pages.
But now, I’m considering compiling several of the books together. For instance, the first four volumes of the story will now become Book One of Elithius.
What do you think of this? Do you prefer longer or shorter books?
Do you think it’s better to keep the volumes separate, and have a lot of books, or to make them more novel-sized (about 320 pages each), and have just a few books?
Your input really matters!!!