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Author Topic: How do you like your book chapters? (Thin, Thick, ect.)  (Read 1543 times)
ZeronHitaro
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« on: July 16, 2012, 09:51:38 PM »

Thought about posting this in B&Q but that seemed more suited for individual projects rather than generic questions so...*shrugs*

Anyway a curiosity came to mind the other day. How do people prefer the thickness of their book chapters? I know a lot of novels I've read seem to have a crapton of small chapters (4-6 pages in length); I can think of a few that go for about 10-12 with even rarer going 12+. Not sure which I prefer while reading honestly. While writing I seem to be in the habit of making my chapters episodic so they usually wind up in that 12+ range.
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Annubis
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« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2012, 10:00:31 PM »

Long, hard and black.

Okay, now for a real answer. I don't think you need chapters at all. It's dysfunctional to the flow in a sense.
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Starmongoose
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« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2012, 10:27:11 PM »

Um...medium?

James Patterson-esque chapters piss me off because they are all about a page and a half long and completely unnecessary. While I don't like super-long chapters either, if my eyes get tired usually I just try and get to the end of the chapter before putting it down. This is because the end of a chapter is usually the end/start of whatever is happening or is being talked about. It's a good mental break and gives you a place to start fresh when you come back. Otherwise it's like entering into a conversation that's halfway done.
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Yoda
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« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2012, 11:45:28 PM »

A Song of Ice and Fire has perfect chapter lengths.

There's no right answer for every chapter. In a perfect chapter the ideas developed are separate from another chapter and are fully realized in that chapter. What I'm trying to say is that shit better not be long and dry
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Annubis
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« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2012, 12:32:19 AM »

Um...medium?

James Patterson-esque chapters piss me off because they are all about a page and a half long and completely unnecessary. While I don't like super-long chapters either, if my eyes get tired usually I just try and get to the end of the chapter before putting it down. This is because the end of a chapter is usually the end/start of whatever is happening or is being talked about. It's a good mental break and gives you a place to start fresh when you come back. Otherwise it's like entering into a conversation that's halfway done.

You can simply leave the rest of the page blank every time there is a change of scene and start on the next page. Easy enough to stop reading there and still part of the continuity.
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GrimReality
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« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2012, 10:20:46 AM »

Nowadays, I'm liking books with shorter chapters.Then when I'm only able to read 4 pages before falling asleep I don't feel so bad. Plus, I can actually make it to a logical stopping point. Otherwise I lose my place and end up re-reading paragraphs.
Long chapters can be mind-numbing. Especially in books that jump from character to character. You want to get back and find out what's going on with Zippy McHerosack, but you've got 15 more pages of the Snarky Evildictatorson chapter to plow through. Or, more likely, vice versa.
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« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2012, 05:28:29 PM »

Shorter chapters is best. 10-12 pages is good. I hate when I'm reading and I know I'm going to have to stop soon and I check to see how much longer the chapter is left because I just want to finish it, but then I see there's another 15-20 pages left and I'm thinking...god dammit.
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MeshGearFox
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« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2012, 07:49:36 PM »

I like my book chapters like I like my cocks -- The Bible.
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« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2012, 07:54:27 PM »

I don't really care to be honest. If the book has me hooked I'll read until my eyes refuse to work or life interferes and start back up where ever I left off.
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« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2012, 08:32:58 PM »

Depends on what kind of book (academic vs. leisure) and it's vocabulary (scholarly vs. laymen).

Leisure reading (Laymen): 20-40 pages. Example: Brave story has a mix of some beefy chapters (believe one chapter is 33 pages long) and chump change (3-6 pages).

Leisure reading (Scholarly): 5-10 pages. I don't have a problem with writers who wish to practice their ever-increasing vocabulary arsenal , but I will have a dictionary--or my laptop--next to me reading your book, which will slow me down incredibly.

Academic reading (Scholarly) : 15-20 pages. Get in, say what you need to say, and get out. As fascinating and unique a scholar's research is to their project, I don't need--or really want--to know every detail they have researched in the actual essay. Put your supplementary readings/sources in the footnotes or the notes section at the end of the chapter/book. I promise you, scholars, I will read it. (No really, I will, because I am skeptical with a lot of your essays and would like to see the books/articles you used when you start those interpretative juices going.)

Academic (Laymen): 30-50: If you are able to present you research in such a way that even the laymen can understand it, I will grant you the honors of reading it even twice in one sit-in. These chapters/articles are rare, but when I do fine them...GOLDEN.
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MeshGearFox
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« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2012, 10:15:09 PM »

Oh wait real answer.

I have never paid attention to chapter length at all. For stuff I read on my own, it doesn't matter. For stuff I read for class, uh... yeah, I never did reading assignments.
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« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2012, 11:38:59 PM »

I like my book chapters like I like my cocks -- The Bible.

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insertnamehere
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« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2012, 02:29:32 AM »

I hate looooongass chapters, I had this problem with Harry Potter.
Some chapters were a nice 10 pages or so and some got near 40, then it starts getting boring.
Ideal for me would be 5 pages, then I can read flexibly since stopping in the middle of a chapter bugs me
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« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2012, 06:24:02 PM »

I like them in the middle, if they are super long I don't feel like I'm making any progress in the book. And I like to stop at the end of a chapter when I'm done reading, so around 7-8 pages is a good length.
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« Reply #14 on: July 23, 2012, 09:36:20 AM »

I have no answer. Length is not a consideration when reading for me, unless I'm on the subway and trying to decide what a good stopping point would be.
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