Long vs Short

Posted July 15, 2012 by elizatilton in Uncategorized / 11 Comments

Lately I’ve been reading a lot of contemporary novels which mean I finish them quick–sometimes one day. Now I’m in the middle of reading Grave Mercy which is about 533 pages. The story is intriguing and I definitely love the main character Ismae, but I keep looking at my bookmark and thinking I have so much more to go….

I’m so consumed with the length, I’m debating on stopping—LUDICROUS. Why? Because I have about 25 other books I want to read, plus a ton of mystery books I need to read for my next WIP.

I haven’t stopped reading Grave Mercy yet because it is a good book and I keep telling myself, ignore the length and stop being such a baby who wants instant gratification.

Has this ever happened to you? The last big book I read was GONE WITH THE WIND. I spent almost three weeks reading about the rolling red hills of Tara…lol

Any suggestions or thoughts on pushing through longer books? Do you prefer short or long stories or it doesn’t matter?

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11 responses to “Long vs Short

  1. Hmmm…I'm split down the middle on this one. If a book is longer than 300 pages it needs to be page turner engaging for me to want to keep going. If it's not, then there's probably stuff in there that should have been cut. That being said, there are some long books I've gotten to the end of and yelled "no, I want more!"

    It boils down to my time is precious. I'm not going to read a super long book that I'm not enjoying just so I can finish it. Like you, the TBR pile is ever growing and I've got my own stuff to work on.

  2. I think novels got insanely long for a while, but hopefully will trend shorter, for the very reason you talk about! When I come across super-long novels, I often suspect that they should have been more strictly edited to cut "fat".

  3. If the stories good enough, I don't think about the length. I think it says something about the writing/story if you don't think about the length and just get lost in characters and plot. The last "big" book I read that I really took notice of the length was The Host. At the beginning it was a little slower so I really noticed the length, but then once I got into the book & the paced picked up, I didn't notice the length at all. And despite my initial hesitation in even picking up the book, I ended up LOVING the story!

  4. You know, my tastes have certainly changed. I gobbled up Harry Potter and the like. Now, I prefer shorter books for the same reason. I have a bunch on my list and I noticed that some of the longer ones tend to be slower paced and I have a love for fast paced.

    Now, when it comes to audiobooks the longer the better! Hell I was even willing to listen to Stephenie Meyer's the Host bc it was 24 hours long. Quite a good book, but even while listening I felt there were descriptive passages that should have been cut. That's one reason longer books just don't do it for me. I HATE overly descriptive language. I feel like it pulls you out of the story and bores me.

    I also tend to write on the shorter side for the same reason. I feel like 56k is the magic number for my novels lol

  5. My contemporary YA manuscript is 60K and my paranormal range from 80k-86K. The paranormal are about 300 pages, which to me is ideal. I admit I haven't read Divergent yet because of its length. I have a ton of books to read and review, so I read the short ones first.

    • I don't even remember Divergent being long because of the pace. I read it in about 2 days.
      I think anything 300 or under is ideal. Who has time to read 600pg books?

  6. Oooh, my YA tend to be long..about 100K. I swear, I'm going to go for 60 K when I start my next YA series. My adult romance are also usually about 100k. I had one that was 80k and my readers complained. Sometimes I wonder how people write novellas because I don't know how to write short stories. Kelly, I should be proud you read Betrayed because it was long, LOL