Length. Everyone wants to talk about it. Some people complain a book is too short or another too long. Oddly, sometimes they complain that my very long books are far too short or that the shorter ones are “only a chapter” but if you dig down deep you sometimes find that it’s the pacing of the story rather than the actual word count. Fast-paced books rush by. They’re so full of action they seem to scream through the mind. If you stop and dwell on details, it slows things down. Do it enough and the book fills out. Do it too much and it begins to drag. Boredom drags, too. And that’s when a short book can feel a century long while a long book can feel like it was just not enough.
I always find perception of length interesting because sometimes it tells you more about how the book reads than how long it actually is.
But mostly, I think of my books not as books at all but in series. It’s hard for me to pick the individual books out in my mind because to me it’s the series as a whole that is the story. Sometimes, when I’m thinking about it, I think about how long the different series are to each other and I thought that you – being my readers – might find that exercise interesting, too, so I have compiled a list of my more recent (since 2018) series and their estimated lengths based on the average book length of each series and multiplied by the number of books in the series. I could actually dig in and draw out the actual word count for each one, but that would take a really long time so I didn’t do it. Suffice it to say, actual word counts would bring the totals up slightly, but not by a high enough margin to matter.
So, let’s look at my book series by length:
Dragon School: 400,000 words
Dragon Chameleon: 300,000 words
Dragon Tide: 200,000 words
Phoenix Heart: 300,000 words so far with an estimated 150,000 more coming.
Bridge of Legends: 250,000 words
Empire of War & Wings: 250,000 words
Fae Hunter: 300,000 words
Bluebeard’s Secret: 270,000 so far with an estimated 100,000 to come
Heart of Shadow: 50,000 so far with an estimated 100,000-200,000 still to come. (Yes, I’m really not sure about this one.)
I’m putting this list out both to my newsletter and on my blog, because I think it will help people when they’re trying to choose a series and when they’re comparing them in size from one to another. The actual book lengths vary, so that makes it harder to judge how long the series are, but when you tally them up, it’s much easier to compare!
I hope you find it helpful!