Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Short Stories vs. Full Length Novels

I was just mulling over the idea of the short story vs. the full length novel and have found some interesting differences from many people. The results are so different it is staggering. During some random questioning, I have found that almost equal amounts of those polled enjoyed both and for good reasons.

Artwork provided by William Kenney
Short stories are, well…short! Some people only have limited time to read and want a close-ended story that has a beginning, middle and end reached quickly as to move onto the next one. Those who enjoy novels do so because they enjoy immersing themselves into lengthy reads and feel that they want as much bang for their buck as possible. These are all excellent answers and ones that I cannot refute or argue.

I actually considered the idea of serializing my series/stories for a few weeks, thinking to offer small amounts of content like they did in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Reason being you give them a small taste and have them come back for more, kind of like modern comic book series. I ultimately decided against this and wanted to deliver classic trilogies (or even an as yet undefined number in a series) to give the reader some meat upon which to chew. However, I am finding that my short stories are doing well enough to merit their efforts (though I always hope for more!)

What does the audience think when it comes to series/novels/short stories/novellas/etc.? What do you want out of your stories?

I hope you enjoyed the sample! See you in Wothlondia! Cheers!

Please visit MY HOME PAGE to enjoy an extended reading experience, see direct links to purchase my full length novel, Covenant of the Faceless Knights, the short stories: Wothlondia Rising, and to see what else Ashenclaw Studios, LLC has in store in the future!

All maps, names and content copyright Ashenclaw Studios 2012 unless otherwise noted.


  1. Well, thank goodness for the current digital revolution we find ourselves immersed in. Oh, and Amazon. The short story seems to have a pulse again and with that comes opportunity. We actually do have a choice and, I think, although there will always be a market for novels, short stories, novellas, novelettes, all have a place again. Some people love reading for a quick fix, and ereaders make it practical to do so. I have a bunch of short stories on my Kindle reader and longer form stories. Ive heard success stories of other writers doing really well just on their short stories alone, which tells me short stories are a viable option.

    I started a fantasy short that turned into a novella, which by the looks of it, will grow into a novel. Ideally writing a few shorts in between your novels, may be the best route to go, in my opinion. Plus the more you have out there the better for your market presence.

    Serialising may work if you have a brand established already and an ongoing series. But in an era where people like things fast, I am not sure how practical that may be. I won't write it off though. Just pondering the idea.

    My 2.5 anyway.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Woelf! I for one am happy that there is a market for the short stories. It gives the reader a small taste of your writing style without having to dive into a full length novel or series. I also agree that am not sure that serializing would work without a following first. Thanks for the comment! Cheers!

  2. I disliked short stories for years, having studied some really grim ones at school! They were very dry and literary. I agree with Woelf2.0 - epublishing has given this genre a new lease of life. I'm discovering some fabulous short stories out there - which of course include yours, Gary. It's an exciting time for writers and readers - although I hope this trend for the latter expecting content for free or unsustainably low prices won't go on for too long. Authors need a fair reward for their hard work.

  3. Hi, Steph! Hope all is well. It is nice to see authors doing what they want to do and seemingly surviving(and some thriving)in the environment for the most part. And yes, free content is something I do not like, but will end up doing at some point or another no doubt to keep up with the joneses and expose my work to a broader base...hopefully. I may give one of my short stories away free soon. I agree that authors should be compensated for their work, as you do and I really thought that .99 cents was the way to go for some quick exposure. I think I am wrong. It needs to be free. I will let you know when I try it. All the best!

  4. I'm working on the first installment of a series of novella length stories (e.g. Wool). It's a unique method and really fun. Novella length allows for full development but in a compressed space. Something to think about.

  5. Seth, thanks for stopping by to comment! Best of luck on your development of what may turn into a series of novella's. Make sure you stop back sometime to tell us how it went! Cheers!