Thursday, August 11, 2016

When Shorter is Sweeter By Kathleen Lawless

When it comes to writing, I'm a sprinter.  I've always written short.  The words spill out of me so fast it's almost shorthand.  I hit save and go back later in a more leisurely fashion to make sure whatever emotions or descriptions I'm depicting are not too skimpy.  For me that's how I write, even a full length novel.  I wrote my first Novella longhand and my hand cramped from trying to keep up with my brain.  That first Novella eventually became a full length book, at great personal angst.  Back then Novellas were not the norm.  But things keep changing in this crazy storytelling business.
These days, I'm once again embracing the Novella.  I've done a few now and it's extremely satisfying to craft a complete story in a smaller package.  I hope readers agree.
This world of our has turned into soundbites and videos and tweets, and it seems people's attention spans are shorter because of it.  For those who want a story they can inhale in one setting, the Novella fits the bill.

Not to be confused with a book report, the Novella is an art form unto itself, featuring fully developed characters with flaws, goals and dreams.  The story has a beginning, a middle, and a happy-ever-after ending once the characters resolve their conflicts. 
I know some writers find the idea of a Novella torturous, but for me it's just another form of storytelling.  One that gives readers even more choice.

12 comments:

  1. I agree, Kathleen. Not everyone can write short. Some people can't even write a short social network post. LOL. The story sounds intriguing and the cover is great.

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  2. I love writing short, so novellas are great for me! I like reading them, too, which makes it even better.

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  3. I love reading well-crafted novellas. The ebook has really advanced the popularity of novvellas.

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    1. Oops. Typo alert. Novella not novvellas.

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    2. Haha,Joan. Glad that was your typo not mine. I agree we have the ebook to thank.

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  4. I write True Confessions once in a while. The challenge for me in writing short is sticking to only the details necessary for the story.

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    1. I didn't know that about you, Hannah. Those are very hard to write.

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  5. Having a degree in journalism and two decades writing for newspapers, I have always written short and have long embraced the novella. I actually think I write better novellas than novels. Now it's getting hard to write a full-length novel. One of the best things about indie publishing is that I can now write a 65,000-word historical novel, where I used to be contracted for 88,000-word historicals. Much nicer.

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    1. I agree, Cheryl. I always thought it was silly our traditional pubbed novels had to be a certain length to fit into publishers shipping boxes.

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  6. I've always thought Kathleen and I wrote similar styles of books. Now, I'm more certain of this than ever. I've written lots of novellas and have for years. They're fun for me and often the only form that works for some characters and plots.

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