Tuesday, July 14, 2009


I know it's not Wednesday, but it's been a while since I've been able to post any sort of progress on anything substantial - and it is only 5 minutes till midnight here in Australia on a Tuesday night so it's not far away.

My WIP doesn't have a title at the moment.

It does have:

a 1400 word outline
a 500 word bio on the two main characters, the antagonist, and five other characters so far.
Pictures (lots of them) to help me get a mental fix on one of my characters. Strangely enough, I have perfectly good mental pictures of all the others.

And the beginnings of the first chapter. Can anyone tell me if there is a suggested size and number for chapters in a YA novel. I know many of you have done this before so I figured I'd get it straight from those in the know. Cheers in advance.

I think I'm right in thinking YA tends to be between 45-60,000 words...

I shall set the bar at the bottom and work my way up - until told differently ;c)

Is 45k and 15 chapters, making that around 3000 words per chapter for those of you without enough toes and couldn't be stuffed getting out the calculator, too short for a YA novel?


  1. Not short at all. Some of my favorite YA are the shorter ones. Harry Potter was an anomaly for length.

  2. Be ready to hear "novella" from some agents. Others won't care.

    When I started querying The House Eaters and Rock Gods (42K and 40K respectively), I turned some off with the length.

    Truth is, most YA does fall between 40-60K. Such is life. Good luck.

  3. Okay, so I'm hearing that longer is probably better so if I can aim closer to 55-60k I will alienate less agents...is that right?

    Nat - Mr Bean has just done a Basic Instinct in your direction as he waved hello - he's such a bean whore!