As you know, Dear Reader, I spent Saturday with some amazing writers, including Patrick Jennings, talking about my favorite topic: children’s books.
One of the attendees in the children’s/YA chat house asked about word count. My standard answer is that, in a first draft, you should use however many words you need to tell the story. Personally, with the exception of the Dear America book for Scholastic (coming out in September), I’ve never fretted over word counts.
And yet, they do matter. 50,000 words is far too many for a chapter book. 12,000 too few for a novel. Yes, yes, there is no “right” number but what kinds of ballparks do you either aim for (if you are word count motivated) or end up with when you write?