To begin with, while most books are between 240 and 300 pages in length, most novels are on the lengthier side. To be honest, nobody buys 30,000-word books. The genre of romance, which spans approximately 55,000 words, is the smallest that is frequently shortened. Two-book deals for series are common only if they are expected to be successful. Otherwise, publishers prefer to push out a single book rather than risk losing money on two.
Our culture's obsession with lengthy books may have something to do with the fact that people used to read more regularly. In the 1850s, for example, an average man could expect to read seven books in his lifetime. By the 1920s, that had dropped to about three. These days, however, we're back up to seven or eight. Of course, there are also longer books being written these days; but even so, it seems clear that we're expecting more from our reading material than ever before.
Some writers claim to write only with a general sense of direction, but others say they need detailed maps to plot out their stories. Either way, you should always have a plan for your story. Even if you end up writing something completely different, at least you have some idea of where you want to go with it.
As for how long your book should be...that's hard to say.
A book that is published in paperback format and has a length of 300–400 pages would typically have between 80,000 and 100,000 words. 100,000 words is a decent goal for adult literature (particularly crime, thrillers, women's fiction, sagas, and romance). 200,000 words is more typical of literary novels.
The first sentence of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol must be included among the most read sentences in history. It is estimated that it has been read by hundreds of millions of people worldwide. This short story was so successful that it was turned into an annual holiday tradition that continues today.
Dickens wrote two other famous stories: The Pickwick Papers and Oliver Twist. Both are considered classics of English literature.
James Joyce's Ulysses is regarded as one of the greatest books ever written. It was published in 1922 when Joyce was 38 years old. This ambitious work consists of about 1,980 words printed on 156 pages.
In conclusion, a book should contain between 11,000 and 20,000 words depending on how long you want the reader to stay interested.
A novel is defined as a manuscript of more than 40,000 words. However, very few novels are as short as that these days. A 50,000-word book is considered the minimal word count. The majority of books are between 60,000 and 100,000 words long. Very few writers manage to squeeze in more than 100,000 words into a single work.
The word "novel" comes from the Latin word novum, which means new. In English, a novel is any length story written in prose, but especially a long narrative fiction work. Some examples of novels include Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, and Anna Karenina. Short stories are written in much shorter lengths of anywhere between 1,000 and 20,000 words.
Until the 19th century, only long poems were called novels. Alexander Dumas wrote several novels between 1844 and 1874. They were published under the pseudonym Alexandre Dumas. Today, his works are known as classics.
The modern novel came about in the late 18th century with the publication of Pamela, by Samuel Richardson. It was an epistolary novel written in letters between two young people who fall in love while they're staying at different country houses. Although Pamela was popular, it wasn't the first novel: it was just one of many novels that had come before it.