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Quick question about typing

Discussion in 'Writing Discussions' started by Androxine Vortex, Jan 6, 2012.

  1. Androxine Vortex

    Androxine Vortex Archmage

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    I write my books as chapter books and I don't want my chapters to be too short. So when you are typing (let's just say on like a basically Microsoft Word) and you have a full page of words, how much of that compares to an average sized book?

    In other words, my full page of words on the computer is about the same amount as (blank) in an average book.
     
  2. The only data point I have off the top of my head is that the average chapter in A Game of Thrones is a little over 4,000 words long.
     
  3. Butterfly

    Butterfly Auror

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    I wondered this myself, so what I did was type out a few pages from any book and alter the paper size to fit the text. It came up with width 11cm, height 18cm.

    Don't know which version of word you are using but on the 2007:-

    - Page layout tab

    - look for size

    - select custom size and adjust to the settings above.

    - set text to size 10, about the size of a booksize text and font - I use Times new Roman

    It works out at 35 lines to a page, and in solid text around 350 words per page - depends on how much white space you have.
     
  4. sashamerideth

    sashamerideth Maester

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    I used the Lulu trade paperback template when I wanted to find out that sort of thing. I am averaging 2500 words per chapter in just about all my active projects, can't remember the page count, but with me going for ePub, doesn't really matter that much.
     
  5. zizban

    zizban Troubadour

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    I dont worry about chapter length. Worry about that after you finish it. You may merge chapters in revisions.
     
  6. mythique890

    mythique890 Sage

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    There's really no way to say because books come in different sizes and use different fonts and font sizes. Manuscript format is usually a double spaced sized 12 Courier font with 1 inch margins, which averages out to 250 words per page. My chapters usually end up between 2,500 and 4,000 words, which means anywhere from 10 to 16ish pages in that format. I'm guessing single spaced size 12 Times New Roman would take half as many pages or less.
     
  7. Androxine Vortex

    Androxine Vortex Archmage

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    (Just out of curiosity) How do you guys write out your chapters on the computer? Do you save one chapter in a single word doc and then make a new one for the next chapter. I usually have three chapters in one file at a time.
     
  8. sashamerideth

    sashamerideth Maester

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    I use yWriter for one, so everything is in one project, divided into chapters and scenes. My second isn't long enough yet to worry about management.

    My third one is episodic, one file per episode.
     
  9. zizban

    zizban Troubadour

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    I usually write one chapter in a single word doc. It makes revisions easier for me. Then I'll create one big document as the MS.
     
  10. I use OpenOffice. One chapter per document, and then I create a master document that links them all together so it's easy to export as a single document for purposes of converting to ebook formats.

    Although I might try yWriter or something that makes managing novel-length things easier; OpenOffice is okay but certain things are kind of a pain (like when I need to renumber all my chapters).
     
  11. Butterfly

    Butterfly Auror

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    Same as you zizban. Although I found that the file list threw it all out of order and into a dewey system. It went 1, 10, 11, 12... 2, 20, 21, 22... 3, 30... and so on. So I found I had to use 01, 02, 03, 04, etc, to keep them displayed in order.
     
  12. Taytortots

    Taytortots Minstrel

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    I found this page when looking for how many words or lines are on a typical book page. I'm sure, with this you could figure out where one page would end in your novel. Word count to page
    Scroll down past the grid. You may find it slightly vague, but obviously book size and type would make the facts vary. Hopefully you can find something out of this though.
    As for how I write, it's all in one big document. I find it easier that way, and it's still pretty organized. If I have to get to one chapter for editing or any other reasons I just use ctrl + f and type in the chapter number, which sends me straight there so it's not difficult to find.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012
  13. mythique890

    mythique890 Sage

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    I'm the same as Taytortots, at least for my first novel and a half. Everything was in one LARGE document and I skipped around with Ctrl + f. It was hard to find things sometimes, but it was nice when I decided to change two characters' names after I'd written the entire 26 chapters. Besides, when I was looking for specific scenes I could never remember which chapters they were in anyway, so it saved me from opening 26 documents. And I always had an accurate page/word count.
     
  14. JazzTD

    JazzTD Dreamer

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    I don't really see why chapter length matters, personally I enjoy just writing everything in one document, no complicated number sequences, I just write. If I feel the need to mark where a chapter should be end I just use a line and some bold text noting the chapter's end for future reference, after I finish the story or whatever I was writing, I can go back and mark the chapters dividing them into separate documents by copy/pasting if I should feel inclined to.

    Many of the books I've read have different length chapters for everything, I believe it's mostly to separate one event from another, or just give a pause when it seems too long. Of course others may view it differently, but this is just my little point of view.

    Some books such as the Maximum Ride series have 1-3 page chapters, others have 10-15 page chapters, there's really no criteria for the number of words a chapter has, from where I'm standing anyway.
     
  15. terence.soule

    terence.soule Dreamer

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    I started with one chapter per file, but found that putting it all into one big document was easier in the end. It made it easier for the words to flow and to be consistant with names and other words the dictionary doesn't recognize - once I was sure I was happy with a name I could add it to the dictionary and fix all versions in the document. While writing I added chapters where they seemed to fit, but during revising I moved the chapter breaks around a bit - also easier when it was one big file. I ended up evening out the chapter lengths a bit because I wanted each one to be about one night's worth of reading, but there are plenty of novelists that take the other route and mix long and short chapters.
     
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