Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Time in Pages


I've been asked to write a few novellas to accompany the release of my YA Steampunk series next year.

They can be any character or event in the series. So...yay! Between 2500-5000 words long.  Whoa...what?! 

At first I was concerned at the time frame. I have until summer, but they want a few and thats a tight timeline for all the different ones I have in mind. 

Then I started writing...OMG this is hard!  I don't have enough time/pages to do what I want with the little vignettes and backstory.

There's so much more to the characters and the world. I know, I spent years creating and fine tuning them both. 

BUT...I can DO this...right? *sigh*

So the average novella is 20 pages which is around 5,000 words. Thats a lot, right? I handwrote out a story beginning. I thought I was being brief but I'm at page 11 already so I have to slash, slash, slash!

I guess it feels like time measured out in pages is a bit constraining. I have to cut out extraneous things like too much setting description, etc. And that's sort of difficult if your world is a steampunk post apocalyptic version of New York...like we're talking major world building needed here.

I'm hoping it works out.  I have in mind 5-8 novellas so hopefully I will get the process down pretty soon. 

Never realized how challenging this would be. Hats off to the other authors out there whose free novellas I gobbled up and loved...you guys rock!

+Raquel Byrnes 

6 comments:

Nick Wilford said...

Good luck! I find novellas can be fun, but 5,000 words is a particularly short one. More of a short story? If each one focuses on a certain character, it might take the form of an anecdote from their childhood or some incident, unrelated to the main series, that tells the reader something about them. Yeah, you'll need to keep details light, but if they're to act as teasers for the main series then just sprinkle in enough to get readers intrigued. Have fun with it!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

You can do it! When I have a lot on my plate, I will take the number of pages I need to edit and divide that number by how many days I have to complete them and then I know how many, at minimum, I have to do each day.

Stephanie Faris said...

I've found it's like that old adage about eating an elephant "one bite at a time." Set a goal of 500 or 1000 words a day and pretty soon, you're done!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Wow, I would have some trouble with that. But it sounds like a great promotion idea.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

If it was me, I'd been concerned and nervous too. But when it's all been said and done, you're going to feel such a freedom, Raquel. Just knowing you did it will do wonders for your confidence. Best of luck. Remember: you can do this!

Crystal Collier said...

I hope your writing is going well! I was part of a flash fiction blog where I was expected to churn out a new story between 1 and 2000 words every month. Now that was a challenge. 5000 is nothing, right?