The Perfect Word Count For Your EBook: We Help You Decide!

When writing a book, one wonders does size matter?

Does a 500 page Book automatically mean that it’s good?

The answers to these questions are, not really and NO!

In short, when a book is good, it can’t ever be too long. And a badly written book can never be too short!

This holds true for eBooks as well. There is really no ‘perfect’ length for a great eBook that sells.

And that right there is your answer to ‘what is the perfect word count for an eBook’.

But we still understand that the length of your eBook might be a pressing concern if this is your first time writing an eBook. Do you really need to get a professional editor to reduce the length? Or do you need to hire a writer to extend it?

Your decision for either of the questions above and figuring out the right word count for your eBook depends on various factors.

Struggling to Create an Action Plan for Your Book?

What Really Matters: Reader Expectations!

Your prospective readers know how long an eBook has to be. They are the best judges. Here’s why:

If they are reading a thrilling story involving espionage, they’ll be bummed if they end up finishing it in one night. The same goes for an interesting romance novel or a science fiction thriller. They are going to howl if it’s too short; feeling cheated out of their hard-earned money and may express their anger in the form of a negative review.

Word count for eBook

Of course, all of this is applicable to well-written eBooks that keep readers engaged until the last page. A quick Google search for “perfect eBook length” will show thousands of results. There are many discussions and countless opinions on the matter.

In the end, it all boils down to the subject matter of your eBook and the age, as well as reading habits, of your target audience.

Young readers are accessing digital bookstores in droves, but it’s the long-term readers that are now choosing eBooks over print books—the ones you need to appeal to the most. Keep them in mind when deciding how long an eBook you want to create.

What’s ‘Normal’ Anyway?

Here is how long print books usually aim to be, depending on the genre. Aim for the same word count for your eBook. Every genre has a typical word count when it comes to print books, which is a convenient way of determining how long your eBook should be.

Here’s a quick reference guide*:

  • Micro-Fiction: about 100 words
  • Flash Fiction: 100–1,000 words
  • Short Story: 1,000–7,500 words
  • Novelette: 7,500–20,000 words
  • Novella: 20,000–50,000 words
  • Novel: 50,000–110,000
  • Epic Novel: 110,000+ words

*Via Joan Reeves @ SlingWords

But Aren’t EBooks Supposed To Be As Short As Possible?

Well, it was believed that shorter eBooks are better simply because today’s readers have relatively shorter attention spans thanks to rapidly-consumed media. With distractions and over-exposure to information from various sources, they tend to read in shorter bursts.

However, one eBook guru did his research and it says something entirely different.

Mark Coker, the founder of Smashwords, an eBook publishing and distribution platform, outlined his findings.

The reality is that eBook readers have overwhelmingly voted in favor of longer, more detailed eBooks. The way they spend their Dollars, Euros and Pounds make it more evident that they’d rather purchase a longer eBook any given day!

What Else Do You Need To Think About?

The good thing about eBooks is that there are no printing, binding or paper costs involved. This means that delivering a 200,000-word epic novel is not likely to cost more than trying to sell a 10,000-word short story.

This is also a bad thing. Why, you ask?

Well, eBook authors tend to run away with their stories and end up with extensively confusing and long-winded plots.

So remember, you have the power to be crafty and creative with eBooks. And if you do tend to go on storyline tangents, there are professional eBook editors out there to help you out.

So What Was The Problem Again? The Perfect Word Count!

The best way to find that out is by conducting a general survey of the genre you plan to write for. Find eBooks that you will be competing with; then once you have a ballpark estimate, prepare a manuscript of the same length.

Lastly, make sure that your manuscript is just about long enough to tell the story right. Your eBook shouldn’t be longer than it needs to be. Avoid adding words just for the sake of extending the word count.

If you have any trouble, allow us to take the reins. Our freelance ghostwriters have drafted hundreds of eBooks that have been a massive hit, gaining immense recognition.

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