Writing When You're A Get-To-The-Point Person. (It's frustrating.)

I'm one of those weird writers whose novels come out 40k words short...even after the 9th draft.  I know that my plot is big enough...I've seen full-length novels where less happens.  So why aren't my novels 80k words?

I'm a very get-to-the-point person.  If I can say something in fewer words, I will.

So how do I fix this?  Well, the answer is, I don't really know.  Am I telling instead of showing?  I feel like I am showing?  Is my plot still not big enough?  Am I not torturing my precious characters enough?

This is one of the most frustrating things for me.  I write an essay 200 words short of the minimum word count, not because I don't have enough to say, but because I said it all quickly.  I write short blog posts because why make it long when you can make it short?  I write short books because I don't know how to make them long.  Like seriously, how do you magical long winded writers do it?  (Though should it be long winded if you're writing?)

Last week, I had this grand idea for this post.  I was going to embark on an epic quest to discover the secret of writing a long book.  It failed.  Epically.

And so here I am, asking for advice.  How do you write a novel?  One of those brilliant, 80k (or at least 60k) word novels.


  1. GAH like sometimes I get really descriptive and there's a whole chunk that's all flowery then the next chapter I'm all to the point no fluff....... I really don't know
    I would say keep putting out words
    Maybe people who are just to the point are meant to communicate in that way. Now if you really want to write something long maybe extend the plot? Idk how you would go about that
    BUT ALEA THE CLOCKSHIFTER WAS AMAZING I appreciate the books that just tell you as it is and don't lengthen it cause bluntness is good

    So you're good. And I am not good with advice because the only long and fluffy things I do just come to my head and I honestly don't even realize it :/

  2. I prefer shorter books. :) Honestly long books don't hold my attention or I flat out won't even pick up a thick book. I like to finish a book in about a month or two and not take all year about it. I think most of my complete novels are around 40 or 50 k. So I guess I'm saying hurray for short novels!! And blog posts!! Most ppl only want to spend a few mins reading a blog post.

  3. Hi Alea! Don't stress about writing-to-the-point, that's actually what readers want (otherwise... skimming 0.0). It's actually a good thing that you don't wright flowery, because most readers... just don't want to read it *gasp*.

    In fact, the best writers know how to cut Every. Single. Word. They. Don't. Absolutely. Need. (just read On Writing Well by William Zinsser if you don't believe me;).

    So... it sounds like you are off to a good start with your writing ;).

  4. Well I'm one of those to the point people. I've always found it hard to write more then what is needed to get the idea of what's going on. I guess what has helped me is imagining the scene playing out in my head, then describing everything I saw with words. But since I still haven't finished my novel and have yet to be published I'll keep my ways to myself for now (anyways I don't know if they work yet :D )

  5. Actually, some very well-known authors (Jerry Jenkins immediately comes to mind, though I haven't read his books) who write very terse novels, and instead of lengthening them in the editing process, shorten them. I'd say it's probably not a bad thing. Besides, how boring would it be if every novel was the same length, written in the same way?

  6. I think short books will become more popular in the future; people have so much that grabs their attention that it's difficult to read too many long books. If you've said all that needs to be said and it's good, tight writing, I think it's perfectly fine to have a 40-50k novel.


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