Take the 2-minute tour ×
Writers Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for authors, editors, reviewers, professional writers, and aspiring writers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

How many words are normal for a children's novel?

Say 5th - 8th grade, if that's the best way to measure it.

share|improve this question
1  
If someone can point us to some sort of guideline for children's books in general, that would be extremely helpful. –  Neil Fein Dec 10 '10 at 22:22
1  
At Amazon the page count for books for 10-years-old children varies from 120 to 350. Pick up a children's book in your collection and count the words on one page. Multiply it with the page count and you get a vague idea. –  John Smithers Dec 11 '10 at 18:33
1  
Don't they put kid's books in bigger font too? –  johnny Dec 11 '10 at 19:54
add comment

3 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

According to Colleen Lindsay (former agent), a middle grade novel has on average 35K words.

http://theswivet.blogspot.com/2008/03/on-word-counts-and-novel-length.html

share|improve this answer
add comment

The word count does not matter until it is good enough to engross the children into it and that the story is a right mix of its own ingredients makes it worth a read.

Just research a bit with your neighborhood kids, or relatives having kids of that particular age group. If you have good network of friends, you might come up with helping hands for your cause. That will be first-hand original data for your own good. :-)

share|improve this answer
add comment

If you write a really good story like Harry Potter, you can get away with making kids read an almost infinite amount of words. Although, you'll notice with the Harry Potter books the length of each book increases with each release in the series. So if you're writing a series, start small, then increase the word count with each release.

Publishers are probably more open to this approach, since when you become more established, there's less risk for them with bigger books.

share|improve this answer
1  
I don't believe Harry Potter was classified as a Children's Novel. I believe it was classified as Young Adult, which is totally different. Children's and Middle Grade novels are going to be much shorter and, for the most part, more simplistic. –  Ralph Gallagher Dec 18 '10 at 3:00
    
I don't believe Harry Potter was classified as a really good story. –  Vic Goldfeld Nov 29 '11 at 13:54
    
no Harry Potter is a childrens book, not young adult. –  user4500 Dec 21 '12 at 11:07
2  
Fantasy books are always thicker and are not the best reference, unless for other fantasy works. Since the first book was meant for children around 13 years of age, I do believe that qualifies as a Children's novel. Since the readership grew together with Harry, the last book or two <i>might</i> pass as young adult, even though it doesn't have all the elements that make it YA - an MC that's in late teens does not automatically mean YA. @Vic Goldfeld - for a not really good story, it sure made the author the richest writer ever. –  Tannalein Dec 21 '12 at 16:46
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.