Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Word Count Ain't Nothing But a Number

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Full disclosure that I am writing this piece for 100% selfish reasons.

So that when I am frantically looking up word counts and page counts for books I admire in a bid to compare my own work alongside them, I may stop for a second and go, "Oh, right. The book will be as long as it needs to be."

Full disclosure no. 2 is that I am - due to some excessive bad luck this week - writing this entry on my phone, whose screen is cracked to the degree that it pretty closely resembles the album art of Joy Division's Unknown Pleasures.


There are good books that are very, very short.

There are good books that are very, very long.

There are good books that are exactly right in the middle.

And there are books with the absolute ideal word count that are no good at all.

So stop worrying about it.

I'm serious.

Go take a walk.

Or pet your cat.

Or eat an apple.

Or message a friend youaven't seen in a while.

Walk away from your desk (or wherever it is you've been sitting, quietly dithering yourself stupid).

Come back another day.

(Your work will still be there, I promise.)

And then get back to work.

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.