Word Counts and Page Numbers   Leave a comment

I know I’ve been quiet–sorry about that. A romance release and some editing work have been conspiring against my schedule lately.

Some fellow writers over on Twitter were bemoaning the fact that, pre-publication and especially with an e-book, it’s hard to know how long your book is in terms of page count. Which is always seemed fairly irrelevant to me, as word count is a much more reliable number, but it’s been pointed out to me that page count is the thing potential readers often want to know. So I decided to see what I could find out.

It’s impossible to have an exact conversion between word count and page count, of course, because page count varies based on writing style, form factor, and formatting, but I did find some comparative counts that can be used as a general guideline. Approximations for mass-market paperbacks:

80,000 words = 250 pages
100,000 words = 290 pages
130,000 words = 350 pages

Pages in e-books tend to be a little longer, so page counts tend to be a little shorter at the same number of words:

35,000 words = 90 pages
50,000 words = 150 pages
100,000 words = 250 pages
120,000 words = 300 pages

Trade paperbacks are the real doozy, because there are several different standard sizes and publishers have been known to…creatively adjust margins, font size, and pitch to make a book they feel is “too short” look longer. Looking at a random sampling, in general, the word count stew not appear to be too far off the counts from e-books. Hardbacks may accommodate a few more words per page, but we’re talking a difference of about twenty-five pages between a 130,000 word e-book and hardcover, so it’s probably not worth worrying about if you’re just providing a general word count to a reader before the book has reached final formatting.

Posted October 19, 2012 by April L'Orange in Uncategorized

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