Literary Norms?

Posted Friday, 11/18/22

Where was I when this was announced as the literary norm?

Word Count norms. Click on image to view larger size in a new window.

Data from: A Word Count Guide for 18 Book Genres.

I just passed 100,000 words for In the Shadow of the King (100,278 to be exact), and I'm not even half-way finished. In my defense, there is no way to condense the  life of a man who lived during extraordinary times with so many historical events taking place around him. I suppose the book could be considered a biography of sorts, but with fiction liberally sprinkled throughout because not enough was truly known about him.

What 100,000 words looks like! "In the Shadow of the King" by Deborah O'Toole. Click on image to view larger size in a new window.

Not to mention the extras included within - a family tree, five appendixes (historical timeline for Sir Francis Bryan, positions and titles of Sir Francis Bryan, timeline of Henry VIII, castles and palaces of Henry VIII and the royal household during the Tudor era), along with chapter notes and citations, resources and credits, discussion questions and a note from the author. And last, but not least, the character spreadsheet alone is mind-boggling, although no one but me will ever see it, even when the book is complete.

I'm sure when it comes time to edit the complete novel, much ruthless chopping will be done. Or maybe alterations will make it even longer. Who knows until the day arrives? In the Shadow of the King is by far the most ambitious and complicated project I've ever undertaken, pulling ahead of Celtic Remnants and the eight novels contained in the Collective Obsessions Saga.

However, I don't foresee the end for In the Shadow of the King happening until the middle of next year, at least.

Irish Eyes: In the Shadow of the King

Tags: In the Shadow of the King; Writing & Editing