How long should a chapter be?


  • verticallyfrustrated
    verticallyfrustrated
    9 months ago

    Published book chapters vs. Wattpad chapters.

    Let's be real, reading most books you read the long chapters that last for about 10-15 pages and have thousands of words. Then you go to Wattpad chapters, that have maybe 700-1000 words normally. (Some authors do shorter or longer, but that's the middle of it all.)

    If you're planning to write a book and get it published one day, would you want to upload it to Wattpad with a short Wattpad chapter or a realistic thousand of words chapter?

  • duecalione
    duecalione
    9 months ago

    @sarahthepope There are atually many, many published books out there with short chapters. There is no standard. Think of a chapter as a scene. Or an episode. And at the end of it, it makes the reader want to keep reading because it entices it by the end. Chapters have no minimum. Published real-world wise, or Wattpad-wise.

  • verticallyfrustrated
    verticallyfrustrated
    9 months ago

    @duecalione Yeah. I'm just nervous though, I want long chapters but I'm up to 2000 words and I feel like I'm going to bore my readers into removing my book from their library. :-(

  • sageivans
    sageivans
    9 months ago

    @sarahthepope If I'm writing for Wattpad, I usually do two to three pages, chopping up the chapters into parts if necessary. But that's just personal preference - I have a low attention span, and if I'm online I keep finding myself taking Facebook breaks.

    It's your story. If you want a long chapter, do it. If your story is well-written, people will read it regardless of chapter length.

  • duecalione
    duecalione
    9 months ago

    @sarahthepope I have a book that has chapters that can span 7 pages on Wattpad. :P If the readers love the story, they won't care how long the chapters are. Write however long chapters you want. :}

  • selcouth_
    selcouth_
    9 months ago

    It doesn't matter as for publishing reasons.

    I mean, I read a book names, "Olive's Ocean" and the chapters were sometimes no more then a paragraph.

    Others have 20 page chapters.

    In wattpad, since you read it online I would reccomend that you keep it below eight pages. @sarahthepope

  • DarcyConroy
    DarcyConroy
    9 months ago

    @sarahthepope As @duecalione said, it really is up to you. A chapter should have a pariticular purpose that it needs to communicate to the readers, when that is done, the chapter is done.

    BUT I do know what you mean about wanting to have a length which suits Wattpad readers - I myself don't worry about it, but I understand it.

    If it helps, I also post my work on another site which gives detailed stats on viewers and views - in other words, it tells you not just how many reads it's received, but how many unique visitors have come to read it, and I have noticed the following: When I write a chapter under 2000 words (which is only occasionally) it gets less reads than the others, but the same number of readers than my longer ones, which I take to mean that my readers are having to come back to finish my chapters over 2000 words, but are able to read the short ones in one sitting. They are coming back, though, and that's a good sign, to me :)

    I'd say you should go with what feels right for the story - readers will stick with any story that makes them want to know "what happens next?" :)

  • CoffeeNcigarettes
    CoffeeNcigarettes
    9 months ago

    @sarahthepope Honestly, pat yourself on the back if your chapters are longer. Its something not a lot of writers on here can accomplish. If your readers like your book, they'll be jumping in the air in excitement for those longer chapters. I seriously don't see why you wouldn't be excited for longer chapters- it's like your feeding my crack addiction. That being said, don't give yourself a minimum. But seeing what others go by, I would cut chapters up. Readers expect shorter chapters, so give them what they want, and also keep them on edge. Plus, its less work for you because you can feed them bits of chapter 3 over a few weeks, veruses publishin chapter 3 all at once and rushing to have chapter 4 done in a week. Either way, I think your winning.

  • duecalione
    duecalione
    9 months ago

    @CoffeeNcigarettes Crack addiction. xD hahahahah You have it exactly right!

  • CoffeeNcigarettes
    CoffeeNcigarettes
    9 months ago

    @duecalione ITS SO TRUE THOUGH. Like if you give me large amounts of crack all the time you'll be my fav dealer. You want to be my fav dealer, don't you? @sarahthepope

    Personally, I think this is the best analogy I've ever used. 5 bronze stars for me.

  • duecalione
    duecalione
    9 months ago

    @CoffeeNcigarettes xDYUSH it is true. x3 Listen to this person. She has it right. xD @sarahthepope

  • ghostwritethewhip
    ghostwritethewhip
    9 months ago

    While I don't necessarily have any long term goals planned for the story that I'm currently posting to Wattpad, I always write with industry publishing standards in mind. Granted, those standards are very flexible and there are no hard and fast rules, as others have mentioned. That being said, unless the author is very talented, its done for stylistic effect, or the scene doesn't require much description, short chapters are a huge turn off for me. I'm definitely an outlier amongst Wattpad readers in that regard but I rarely find those 1-2 page posts... Hmm, engaging? I need time to reconnect with the characters, especially if the author hasn't posted for a week or more and I can't do that if I only have a few paragraphs with them until the next chapter. Plus, in my opinion, so many authors chop their chapters in half to shorten them for readers but that makes the overall flow of their story awkward. While the transition would be seamless if they kept the chapter at 6 pages, dividing it into two 3-page parts often causes it to lose the momentum and smoothness. I may lose fans for not following the formatting that they like, but I'm here to improve the quality of my work and grow as a writer, not appease everyone with a short attention span.

    I like stories with chapters that range between 4-7 pages in length. Granted, I also make very snap judgments when it comes to what I read. If I'm bored after the first paragraph, I'm not going to make it to the second page, let alone page 7. But if someone is a good writer and what s/he's writing actually says something, I'll happily read 6,000 words at a time and love the author for it. @sarahthepope

  • DarcyConroy
    DarcyConroy
    9 months ago

    I'm with you @ghostwritethewhip Not so much that I have a page length I prefer to read, but that I don't want the flow of the story interrupted with an artificial gap. When it comes down to it, if I'm noticing the length of a chapter while I'm reading it then I'm not engrossed in the story - for whatever reason.

  • Dusk2Day
    Dusk2Day
    9 months ago

    I think when people are bored and looking for exciting reads, they wont be reading the long paged ones. Probably one to three pages is enough because when the excitement builds up and then the chapter just ends... It will make readers curious and keep turning to the next chapters, plus you'll get more votes and comments

    hmmmmmmmm okay bye

  • LovableMonster
    LovableMonster
    9 months ago

    As long as it can be without making a reader want to do something else instead. As long as your keeping your readers interested it doesn't matter how long.

  • Dusk2Day
    Dusk2Day
    9 months ago
  • theevilgryffindor89
    theevilgryffindor89
    9 months ago

    @ghostwritethewhip You're always the hero to my heart <3 You know, I think people would look the quality instead of quantity, gosh, people are so judegmental these days! :O

  • verticallyfrustrated
    verticallyfrustrated
    9 months ago

    @Dusk2Day No offense, but why are you advertising on my thread? :~|

  • Dusk2Day
    Dusk2Day
    9 months ago

    yeaaahhh sorry, you can delete that or murder me if you want to, it was afternoon and i was bored and stuff @sarahthepope im really sorry. About the pages though! I dont know how long the pages are until i post it, i think wattpad should have a thing that can count pages. okay bye

  • Alicia17b
    Alicia17b
    9 months ago

    @sarahthepope On here, I think chapters should be about 3-7 pages, more is alright... the only problem I have with that is reading a story that is 11 Wattpad pages and realizing it's completely boring. I'm fine with 11 pages, but I need to like the story in order to actually read it... My pages are from 3-5 pages. My last chapter that I uploaded was 5 pages, and it was 3,930 words - 7 pages on Word Document. My preface was only 3 Wattpad and Word Document pages and lasted up to 1,771 words. Before I came to WP, I had chapters like people on here, lasting one to two pages (WD actually), which would make a one page chapter on here. But now that I've improved, mine last up to three-four-or five.

  • Alicia17b
    Alicia17b
    9 months ago

    @Dusk2Day Two pages on Word Document is one page on here, three-four is about two-three pages on here, and six-seven are five on here.