How Many Words Does it Take to Make a Novel?

Have you ever wondered how many words it takes to make a novel?

I just picked three of my favorite books and did a simple count equation, added them all together and divided the sum by three. The average I came up with was 83421. This means to me that my stories are falling short of novel status. I need to learn more about my characters below their surfaces. It is time to start digging deeper.

I need to find out what their secrets are, what they fear and what they dream about. All these things make them tick and keeps them going.  A bunch of dominoes waiting to fall. If the right one falls, everything can fall apart for the hero or the heroine. How much should they lose before they take action?

Life is full of conflicts, even in historical stories. Back then it was constant war. Most people never lived beyond forty. With the biggest cause of death being killed in battle. The second cause of death was a disease. Then came starvation.

Getting inside a character’s head can be a bit scary. You’re about to experience the same thing the character is going through. Loss of family and homes, being alone in a world filled with constant battles to stay alive. Where is the safe haven?

These things are some of what I have avoided in the past when writing. Now, I’m about to embark on this new character encounter. Learning to see through their eyes all the stumbling blocks they will need to face. This must be one of the reasons some writers will write the end of the story first. That way they can remember that the story does have a potential to have a happy ending.

What does word counts mean to your writing?

Do you ever feel like you fall short of your goals when you write THE END?

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About Linda Nelson

Full-time worker by day and a college student/writer by night. Linda is studying Business Management and Social Services while she works on her Bachelor Degree at Franklin Pierce University. Blogging when she can to keep the writing muse growing. In 2010, Linda broke out into writing with her first Contemporary Young Adult novella, Friends of Choice which she later retitled and re-edited in 2013 to, What Karla Wants. Since then she has published two more Contemporary Young Adult novels, one of which is a Sweet Romance, and published two slipstream fantasy novels. Linda is a member of Romance Writers of America since 2012. Watch for her coming new releases.