16 March 2011

Writing Wednesday: Novella Length!

Heh. In case you were worried, this post is not going to be novella length. Actually, nothing is novella length at the moment, but the story I've been working on for . . . a month? maybe, is getting pretty close.

According the the SFWA (Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America), to which I do not belong, the official lengths for stories is as follows:

  • short story: less than 7500 words
  • novellette: 7500 to 17, 000 words
  • novella: 17, 500 to 40, 000 words
  • novel: more than 40, 000 words
Personally (and I am aware I am currently firmly in the "nobody" category as far as writers go), I prefer the term "long story" to "novelette" because it's more obviously related to "short story" which it is essentially just a longer version of. I'm also pretty sure most other bodies with any claim to being "official" specify that a novel should be at least 50, 000 words unless it's YA, in which case it can be shorter. But what do I know?

Anyway, there's no real reason for this rambling, except that I just finished transcribing "Brother Thomas's Angel" from my longhand notebooks, and it's just under 13, 500 words. So approaching, though not yet at, novella length.

But the thing is, though the story is finished in the sense that it has a beginning, middle and end, the characters grow somewhat and the central problem in their lives has reached some resolution, there is still more to tell. The problem that *seems* to be the central one (but isn't, exactly, though it is a big one) does not get resolved. And I think the secondary main character (the angel of the title, who may or may not really be an angel) needs to narrate.

So the story is finished for now. Until I start writing the next bit. But I think I need to write some more of Aeryn Daring and the Scientific Detective first.

But before I do that, I have an article about anime and folklore to finish up and hand in.

And for anyone wanting to read about bookbinding and letterpress and the beasties in my woods, I apologize. I'll post about the stuff later in the week.

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