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Re: Chapters For now, just keep writing it until you are satisfied.

We can say "each story has its own beat", but I feel 11k is very, very long. I wouldn't go above 5k per chapter, and depending what that chapter is about, it may still feel like forever to read through it.

To have an estimation, most of Game of Thrones chapters have around 4k-5k words per chapter. Some more, some less.

But like I said, for now just keep writing. You can separate and create/edit chapter endings or cliffhangers later.

April 27, 2016, 04:25:06 PM
Re: Chapters Yeah, 11K is pretty long. But like Lanko and Cameron said, finish the thing first before you worry about chapter divisions. The important thing is to get a first draft out at the preliminary writing stage.
April 27, 2016, 05:20:20 PM
Re: Chapters Write the chapter at the full length and then read it back and see how it feels. You might find a sweet spot where  it's best to wrap things up at and get ready for the next chapter.
April 27, 2016, 05:32:28 PM
Re: Hello!
Hi Everyone,

New on the forum.
I am an aspiring writer who hasn't written anything in his life, other than my dissertation.

I'm a Dutch guy, I live in Bulgaria and write in English.
I'm writing a technological  fantasy cross-over. Not really inspired on any real book, other than my own common sense and my ideas on what would be awesome.

Happy to be here and hope to learn a lot of all of you.

PS: These letters under the posts are a pain as I can't really see it well.
Welcome Roelor! Hope you enjoy the forum :P

P.S if you ever need an evil sidekick to help take over the world, then i'm your guy ;D ;)

April 27, 2016, 06:56:07 PM
Re: Chapters At 11k, I'd ask myself if there is too much of an info dump, back story, or world building you're trying to do in the first chapter.

The first chapter or prologue should connect to your target audience as fast as possible via a connection to the character(s), action, setting, event, or whatever your target audience likes. Look at your work as a reader would and see if you're delivering what they want.

If you're certain you've written something that will connect to readers enough that they want to keep reading to find out more then don't worry about the length. Use as many words as needed... no more, no less.

April 27, 2016, 11:51:35 PM
Re: Chapters I believe that most chapters should be between 1K and 7.5K, the length of a short story, but there is nothing inherently wrong with a chapter that consists of one word or 25K words.

April 28, 2016, 04:21:45 AM
Chapters I find that I have a tendency to write longer chapters, but 8k would be pushing it for me. The first part (three chapters) of my current novel doesn't go over 5k (or at least not by much if I recall). Don't cut it down just for the sake of it, but I would say that it's a good bet that you could either split it up or trim it down if maybe you're unloading too much all at once. Think forward a bit and see if there's something that might be better kept close to the chest.

For reference, people have made available analyses of various SFF works for chapter length ranges and averages. I would utilize a notion of those when thinking critically about your own work.

April 28, 2016, 03:27:21 PM
Re: Overused
Are orcs really overused I've not read a fantasy book in months with an orc.

I'm actually struggling to think of a fantasy book that does have orcs, actually. One Pratchett book, LotR, the Warhammer universes... even Shannara and Midkemia don't have Orcs (Trolls and Goblins respectively, but not Orcs). Plenty of them in games, but in books?

In fact, on the non-human races thing in general, I'd say I read most fantasy these days with only humans than featuring non-human. I'd suggest that if anything, human-only fantasy is the overused concept here.

April 28, 2016, 03:46:59 PM
Re: Chapters
Hey guys,

I only started writing recently and finally finished some of the sequences I was looking forward to write.
Now my question to you is:

How long are most of your chapters?
I have written 1 chapter now, and its over 11k words.
Do you think this is too much for 1 chapter and will discourage the reader?
Or should I not care and just write it till I am satisfied?
It really doesnt matter how long your chapters are, as long as it is consistent. I personally write each chapter between 5-6k words. I think you should just go on and write it and then look back and cull some pages out that you don't like.

April 28, 2016, 04:18:45 PM
Re: Chapters The best advice I have is: a chapter should be as long as it should be.

That is totally unhelpful though! :)

I would certainly say that in first draft, don't worry about it. Write. Get it all down. Worry about breaking it up later. When it comes time to worry about it, there are a number of ways to approach it. You can go the "chapters all about x length, find a good breaking-off point around there". You can break it up wherever feels right without worrying about how long it's been - and that's fine. I've read and enjoyed books with chapters that varied in length from 20 pages to 3 words. (And that three-word chapter was a very effective chapter!) Or you can not break it up at all. Terry Pratchett almost never has any kind of separation beyond scene breaks, and it's fine.

Personally, I find my chapters come more or less organically from my planning process, inasmuch as I plan out major beats of the story (say, ten major plot/turning points to the whole novel, each leading into the next) and each of those becomes a chapter. I know the chapter is done when I've achieved the plot beat. Usually each plot beat takes around 3 or 4 scenes to achieve, and my scenes tend to be around 1-2k words, so I end up with chapters around 3-6k words. But that's just the way I go.

When it comes right down to it, how you chapter your story is like how you slice a cake. It has some superficial impact on the presentation of the story, but it doesn't really change how much the consumer enjoys it. :)

April 29, 2016, 12:15:41 AM