Re: How many words you are recommend for one chapter?

#9
I wasn't pointing at anyone in particular either, just giving my feedback as a reader. 

That's an interesting choice @blindwatcher, why did you prefer 15k chapters every now and then, rather than 2-3k every other day? 

Is it a deliberate choice, because of story rythm, artistic choice or just preference? or was it constrained by logistics and time available for writing/eiting/publishing? 

What feedback did you get from your readers on that choice? 

Re: How many words you are recommend for one chapter?

#10
-Tynian Hehe I know, I was just making a joke with the "Thems fightin words" thing and tried to clear it up so people didn't think we were feuding or anything.

Feedback wise, I ran a poll actually, so I have some numbers to back this up. So the poll divided chapter counts in set brackets of a couple thousand, from RR's average algorithm pleaser of 1.5k-2.5k all the way up to my chapter length for OT 15k'ish. I gave three votes and also provided a 'chapter length doesn't matter' option to cover the indecisive or better represent choice and preference. A lot of people actually voted before I closed the poll. I was fact finding for my second story Mana Soul at the time, so I was curious to see what people thought.

33% voted for 15k+
2%ish voted between 15k and 6-7k
32%ish voted for 6k-7k
1%ish voted for 1.5k-2.5k
and lastly, around 30%ish voted for "No preference, so long as the spice flows!"

Now bear in mind that this was like nine chapters or so into my story, (I accidentally deleted the poll yesterday doing some editing /sigh) so there would obviously be a longer chapter bias in the poll. Still it was very interesting to see.

Comments wise, it's actually just about the same if I interpreted intent. Most people who comment on the length of my chapters are very happy about the length. Some are happy about the length but worried about me being able to establish a reader base and/or recomend dividing them for my own benefit in pleasing the algorithm. Lastly, a very tiny minority don't like it. unsurprisingly, the negative comments are all in the early chapters. That's why I was saying to bear that in mind with the poll, it's going to have an obvious bias due to anyone sticking it out long enough to see the poll obviously preferring longer content.

As for my own motivations for writing longer chapters. I have talked about it before in other posts, but basically, it's because of how my brain structures content. I just happen to find writing around 15k words for a single chapter to be what comes naturally to me. Having said that, people have pointed out places I could 'break' some chapters to divide them into smaller ones, but even with it pointed out, I usually don't see it or recognize it as viable. Even Mana Soul is taking some real work to 'halve' each chapter down the middle to maintain a steady release schedule without risking burnout.

I would say a great deal of my preference and brain training came from university and writing so many essays for my classes more or less in one sitting a week. Which in turn is because of my eye condition. It's very easy for me to get eyestrain, and recovering usually takes a day or two. So I maximize my overall efficiency by doing large batches of writing in a single sitting, leaving a couple days for recovery, then editing as best I can before releasing the content and then spending a day or two listening to other stories to recharge and recover before starting the process again.

It's a curious thing really. Being aware of what the algorithm wants and doing the opposite. However, I don't think catering to the algorithm would actually make my work more popular by a significant degree. My choice in prose and tendency towards a slow burn, lend themselves very well to longer chapter lengths. If the chapters are too short, they run the risk of being far too slow paced and turning people off the story.

Ultimately, I write what I would like to read/listen to. I listen to a lot of stuff using TTS and I'm not gonna lie, I have a serious bias towards 3k+ chapters when doing so, because alt tabbing to set the TTS going again gets frustrating really quickly. So while my chapter lengths are more like happy accidents, I don't really feel like changing them either xD

I hope that answers your questions  peogentleman

Re: How many words you are recommend for one chapter?

#13

amizam Wrote: Hello everyone.

I been working on my first novel recently so I want to ask how many words you are recommend for one chapter? I think my story is too simple. The words are too short and the storytelling style is not very interesting. You can check out my novel.



Oh and i just read your story description, you might want to put it through grammarly (it's free), there are a lot of mistakes, tenses mixing, gender issues (MC is a girl or a man? you use she and he), plural issues etc...

I haven't read a chapter yet but just the few lines of the description will deter a lot of readers.

Re: How many words you are recommend for one chapter?

#16
But if you use Grammarly, keep in mind that it acts downright ludicrous at times. It thinks it knows what's 'correct' grammar, but it really doesn't.
For instance, it wants you to put all grammar inside of ' ' when you might be using it as a character using air quotes.

"and then he said 'you better get up or I'm gonna smash your skull in'! I mean, how rude can you get?"

Not the best example, but you'll soon get the point. It says a lot of dumb stuff.

Re: How many words you are recommend for one chapter?

#17
amizam Wrote: Hello everyone.

I been working on my first novel recently so I want to ask how many words you are recommend for one chapter? I think my story is too simple. The words are too short and the storytelling style is not very interesting. You can check out my novel.


Your chapters should have as many words as are necessary for your story.

While there are some negative effects with far too little or far too much words (namely the reader not getting to immerse into the story and the reader getting exhausted from reading), those extremes are usually hard to get into on word count alone (though other problems can increase the effect where that happens).

There also is the effect of readers feeling that a chapter "was too short", though that has usually nothing at all to do with the actual chapter length and not even that much with how much content a chapter had, but mostly about how good the end of the chapter is. A good chapter gives the reader some emotional conclusion and sends them off. That can be a cliff hanger (a good cliff hanger needs to chapter to culminate in the, thus giving good conclusion, some joke or other culmination). A common trap for writers is having only the content conclude, but not translating that into some emotional conclusion.

The second most important after the end of the chapter is it's beginning. The characters appearing need reintroduction, the reader being reminded about what the story is about. Sometimes on a slow weekend I start some stories, read all their chapters yet and remember the fiction name and when then later the week there is a new chapter I read it because I remember the fiction name but then cannot remember which of that stories it was before I reach the end of the chapter. That is the kind of story that might reach a few loyal fans and might even work as novel, but has a big disadvantage at becoming a successful web serial for a wider audience. (To make your characters memorable, best give them some form of descriptional catch-phrase. As always: it works best when the reader does not even realize what you do there, but the chances of getting 'caught' are low and the downsides of assuming each reader will remember the last chapter are too large to not try).

Re: How many words you are recommend for one chapter?

#19
Games of thrones? 

The best way to progress is to keep writing, though. Just use grammarly, it is enough to make your prose decent.

Also, enable the suggestions on your story so that readers can easily propose corrections for you. They will and it will help you pinpoint your frequent mistakes. 

Reading and writing are very different, even proofreading yourself is very hard (you know what you meant and your brain automatically correct a lot of mistakes, making them har to spot.) 

Good luck with the writing.