How Many Average Novel Word Count Have – Unlocking the Secret

Average novels come in a variety of lengths, but understanding the typical word count can provide valuable insights for both writers and readers. Knowing how many words to expect in a standard novel can help authors set realistic goals and assist publishers in categorizing books effectively. In this blog post, we will explore into novel lengths to uncover the secrets behind the average word count of a novel, shedding light on this fundamental aspect of the literary world.

Key Takeaways:

  • Average Novel Length: The average novel typically contains around 60,000 to 100,000 words.
  • Genre Influence: The word count of a novel can vary depending on the genre, with genres like fantasy and science fiction often having longer word counts than genres like mystery or romance.
  • Focus on Quality: While word count can be a guideline, it is crucial for authors to focus on delivering a well-written and engaging story rather than worrying too much about fitting a specific word count.

average novel word count

Analyzing the Numbers: A Look at Word Count Data

It’s crucial to explore into the word count data to understand the average length of a novel. By analyzing this data, we can uncover trends and patterns that shed light on the evolving landscape of novel lengths.

Historical Trends in Novel Length

Length has always been a crucial aspect of novels, shaping the reading experience and reflecting the storytelling norms of different eras. Over the decades, there has been a noticeable shift in novel length, with earlier works typically being shorter than modern novels. Classic novels from the 19th century, such as those by Jane Austen or Charles Dickens, often ranged from 80,000 to 150,000 words, while contemporary novels can exceed 100,000 words on average.

As printing and publishing technologies have advanced, authors have been able to explore longer narratives and more complex storylines. This shift towards longer novels has blurred the boundaries of what constitutes a “standard” novel length, allowing for greater diversity in storytelling styles and structures.

Genre-Specific Word Count Averages

The genre of a novel plays a significant role in determining its word count. Different genres have distinct conventions and reader expectations that influence the length of a novel. For example, fantasy and science fiction novels tend to be longer, often surpassing 100,000 words, as world-building and intricate plots require more space to unfold.

The word count averages can vary widely across genres, with some genres like romance or mystery novels typically clocking in at around 80,000 to 90,000 words, while others like epic fantasy or historical fiction can exceed 150,000 words. Understanding these genre-specific trends is crucial for both writers and readers, as it shapes the storytelling possibilities within each genre.

Factors Influencing the Length of a Novel

Little is known about the intricate factors that dictate the length of a novel. However, several key elements come into play when determining the word count of a book. Understanding these factors can provide insight into why some novels are longer or shorter than others.

  • The complexity of the plot and the number of characters involved can significantly impact the length of a novel. More intricate storylines and a vast array of characters often lead to a higher word count.
  • The writing style of the author also plays a role in the length of a novel. Some authors may use more descriptive language and elaborate on details, resulting in a longer book.
  • The pacing of the story can influence the word count as well. A fast-paced novel may be shorter, while a slow-burning narrative could be more extensive.

Recognizing the various factors that contribute to the length of a novel can help both writers and readers better understand the complexities of crafting a book.

The Influence of Genre on Word Count

Word choice: When exploring the length of a novel, the genre in which it falls can greatly impact the word count. For example, fantasy and science fiction novels tend to be longer due to world-building and intricate plots.

Word variation: Conversely, genres like mystery or romance may have a shorter word count as the focus is more on the plot and character development rather than extensive world-building.

The Role of Publishing Standards and Market Expectations

To explore deeper into the length of novels, it is imperative to consider the role of publishing standards and market expectations. Publishers often have guidelines regarding word count for specific genres and target audiences.

This ensures that books align with reader expectations and market trends. Understanding these standards can help authors tailor their work to meet industry requirements and reader preferences, ultimately influencing the length of their novels.

average novel word count per page

Measuring Word Count: Tools and Techniques

Despite the intricacies of word count measurement, there are various tools and techniques available to simplify the process. Authors and publishers can utilize these methods to accurately determine the word count of a novel, which is crucial for various reasons such as determining the book’s length, pricing, and marketing strategies.

Software Solutions for Word Count Tracking

Tracking word count through software solutions is a popular choice for many writers. Programs like Microsoft Word, Scrivener, and Google Docs offer built-in word count features that automatically tally the number of words in a document. Additionally, there are specialized writing software options such as ProWritingAid and Grammarly that not only check for grammar and style but also provide accurate word count information.

Plus, online tools like WordCounter and Easy Word Count offer quick and convenient ways to determine word count without the need for additional software downloads. These tools are beneficial for writers who prefer a simple and efficient method for tracking word count.

Manual Counting Methods and When to Use Them

Word count can also be calculated manually, especially when dealing with physical manuscripts or when software solutions are not available. While this method may be time-consuming, it can be useful in certain situations where a precise word count is needed. Authors may choose manual counting when editing a printed draft or when verifying the accuracy of software-generated counts.

Manual counting methods involve physically counting each word in a passage, which can help writers develop a deeper understanding of their text. However, manual counting is best reserved for specific instances where accuracy is paramount, as it may not be practical for larger documents or extensive editing tasks.

what is the word count of the average novel

Beyond the Numbers: Quality vs. Quantity

Not all novels are created equal when it comes to word count. While it’s interesting to research into the average word count of a novel, the real question remains – does word count equate to quality storytelling?

The Relationship Between Word Count and Storytelling

An vital aspect to consider is how the word count of a novel impacts its storytelling. Some stories require a vast amount of words to build intricate worlds and develop complex characters, while others can convey a powerful narrative in a shorter format. The key lies in the author’s ability to effectively communicate their story, regardless of the word count.

Balancing Length with Reader Engagement

Countless readers have varying preferences when it comes to the length of a novel. While some may enjoy getting lost in a lengthy epic, others prefer a quick and impactful read. Authors must strike a balance between the length of their novel and the engagement of their readers to ensure that the story resonates with its intended audience.

The key is to maintain a captivating narrative that keeps readers hooked from beginning to end, regardless of the length of the novel. By understanding their target audience and adapting the length of their work to suit their preferences, authors can create a more immersive reading experience.


So, if you’ve ever wondered how many words the average novel has, you now know the secret! On average, most novels fall between 80,000 to 100,000 words. However, this can vary depending on the genre and target audience of the book. Understanding the typical word count for a novel can help aspiring writers set realistic goals and expectations as they begin on their writing journey. Be mindful of, quality always trumps quantity, so focus on creating a compelling story that engages readers, regardless of the word count!


A: The average novel typically ranges from 70,000 to 100,000 words. However, this can vary depending on the genre and target audience of the book.

A: Yes, there are exceptions. Some genres like epic fantasy or historical fiction can have novels that exceed 100,000 words, while others like young adult or novellas may have fewer words.

A: Word count is important because it helps determine the length and pacing of the story. It also plays a role in the marketability and reader expectations of the book.

A: To determine the appropriate word count for your novel, consider the genre, target audience, and storytelling needs of your plot. Researching word count guidelines for your specific genre can also be helpful.

A: If your novel is significantly shorter or longer than the average word count, consider revising the manuscript to ensure that the story is well-developed and engaging. You may also need to adjust the pacing and structure to align with industry standards.