How long is a book? alberta’s check in


Well I’m behind in posting this because of the ‘storm that really wasn’t’ by the time it got to the east coast:) winds still gusting, rain still falling and power is back.

Plenty of rain so, as a gardener, I cannot, will not, complain. I had begun at the beginning of the week to reduce the trees which needed pruning. I was behind on this because I hadn’t wanted friend from forever’s partner to try and do it when he was alive, he would have tried and he really was too ill. So some were too top heavy for winter weather.

I am doing the job in half hour bursts, lopping and sawing is hard work for the old ticker but the courtyard was safe in the high winds and the one in the front made it with no loss of limb, despite the heavy cover of leaf. From the window it looks okay elsewhere but until it stops the gusting I’m not examining further, I’m foolish often but I’m not stupid:)

I had been thinking of canceling subs to our local embroidery group – for various reasons the main being I never went last year! The meetings were in the evening and I’m just too tired at night to be a safe driver, but also the pain in my wrists had become a barrier to plying a needle, I like hand embroidery – I know – I know – machine produces amazing results – I just enjoyed the hand stitching. Anyway with these pills the pain is so much better and the group has changed the venue to the morning. I have signed up for another year with lots of good intentions!:) Maybe I need a ROW80 for this as well.

Anyway went to first this week to find we were going to be wet felting.



But no she was brilliant. I do like a good workshop leader. Despite being in a hired meeting room not a drop of water was spilled – she had worked it out to perfection.

I had given up wet felting a couple of years back it is just too intense on the wrists. Needle felting smaller stuff was the answer but I had missed the wet. I am now the possessor of two lily flowers. I will post pictures when I have finished them – it is an embroidery group after all – but I have plans also to needle felt some small (the flowers are not massive) children to nestle inside the petals – so new WIP in the craft room- Yay.

So if you read last week’s check in you know I am concerned the happy pills I have been put on has smothered my fiction writing abilities. I have been doing a bit of research about this and it does appear to affect some people like this. A great many writers and a few artists. There seems to be a difference as to how depressed or what kind of depression is being treated as to whether it helps creativity or kills it. It is difficult to sort out what is worth reading and what isn’t and am still researching because I will be going back to the doctor to discuss the matter and I want to have the arguments and theories worked out.

It will also be interesting to see if the excitement and buzz of nano will help.

So This Week in ROW80

Even less than before – how long I wonder before I can no longer claim to be a writer!

I have been getting my Goodreads pages sorted, getting books read up to date and, because I realized I was 2 off my target – 100 – for the challenge, have upped my goal to 110. This may well go up again after all there are 2 months more to read in:)

I have begun to read through the books on my Sony reader now for the e-book challenge and have sorted 4 massive books to read for the over 650 page challenge. Happy days with so many unread books.

I have a question though, how many pages constitute a book, as opposed to a short story? And is it the thing now to publish a short story at a time?

I ask because I find a couple of the ‘books’ downloaded are only 40 – 50 pages – a little long, I think, to be a short story, not really long enough for a Novella and certainly not in my opinion a ‘book’. So this old lady who is so often behind the times is asking. I enjoyed them don’t get me wrong ‘tis just a question to ensure I keep up to date:)

Writing: No

Networking: yes

Blogs: no

Reviews: yes, two short ones.

Workshops: yes

Nano: preparation yes, all ready, in theory, to go-go-go on Friday:)

Next Week, fingers crossed:)






Finish lilies and take pics to show you all:)

Hope everyone has had a good week and all the best for this week.

9 thoughts on “How long is a book? alberta’s check in

  1. Oh, and good luck on getting the medication thing figured out!

  2. There are exact definitions of what is a novel, a novella, or a short story, but I don’t think that’s actually what you’re asking. Whenever I publish something, I try to be very specific in the description about what it is and how many pages so the reader knows what she’s getting into. A “book” can be anything, when it comes right down to it: a short story, a collection of short stories, or an epic novel. If you’re interested in meatier works, maybe you should try to always check the estimated page counts that Amazon provides.

    That said, there are a lot of indie authors right now who are promoting serials as the best way to make money, a longer work written in episodes. I think part of the reason is the feeling that a lot of readers don’t want to spend more than 99c for an ebook. That’s not much payoff for a 600 word novel. :) I have never done the serial thing, but I see it discussed a lot on the Kboards.

  3. Eden says:

    Oh, you know my view on the book thing… I want meat in my books, the more ages the better (as long as the story doesn’t suffer for it) because there is almost always a subplot that can be explored to make the world more real and full, Then again, a good short is a nice thing to read too.

    I would never call even a novella length work a book. Maybe that’s why my Goodreads count is so low (that and that I never remember to update it). But if that’s what they’re selling it as, go for it.

    I really hope you can get this medication issue straightened out. Maybe a light-lamp would help you? I’m tempted to try one myself…..

    • alberta says:

      This is what threw me – I like a long book chunky is good, but even a ‘normal’ book is more than 50 pages – as I read very quickly I felt I had been cheated out of a story in some way although as I said I liked the so called books – just confused as to whether I had actually read a book or a short story – need to know for reading challenges – do they count? I’m claiming them as I will be over my target anyway:)

      Funnily enough have just got off the phone from friend from forever/editor and we were discussing light lamps – not sure if I suffer from SAD as well but as I have got some money to spare (having changed cars to a really eco one, car insurance has plummeted)though I might give it a go.

      happy reading:)

      • Eden says:

        I don’t know if a SAD lamp will help things either, Alberta, but I do know that it’s a natural biochemical reaction in our bodies to “reduce” and ease back as we get more sun. The hibernation instinct, or whatever they call it….

        Maybe there’s a place that will let you try one for a few weeks to see if it helps before committing to the purchase?

  4. Leslie R. says:

    I like hand-stitching as well. There’s something very meditative and soothing about pushing the needle through the fabric I find – although I mostly cross-stitch rather than embroidering.

    I meant to comment on your post about depression last week, but somehow didn’t get back around to it. The main reason I stopped taking medication for my depression was because I felt it was taking away my creativity. I don’t know what the answer is – sometimes I’m still too depressed to write, so that doesn’t work either, but I don’t think the medication was working all that well for me anyway. Maybe I should have stuck with it longer, and tried more things and I could have found the right one. I hope that in working with your doctor you will find an answer that works for you. I’m looking forward to NaNo though – hopefully that will go well for all of us!

    • alberta says:

      I know what you mean depression it self can hinder writing but it has never been like now, when there is nothing there to write – I’m going to see if I can cme and go on them – take them if things get desperate only – because I will get depressed about losing the writing if it goes on much longer! catch 22 really. Thanks for coming back, appreciate it.

      Am hoping the buzz of nano will move me forward somewhat – fingers crossed:) all the best with your nano:)

  5. I could paraphrase Abraham Lincoln and say, “A book is as long is it needs to be to be read and enjoyed,” but that would seem irrelevant. Rather like me. :)

    • alberta says:

      oh so very helpful:) made me smile though – how long is a peice of string? well that made both of the short ones books so on your answer I could claim them both for my reading challenges:) – felt like a bit of a cheat to do so as they only took bout half an hour to read but hey if they are books:)

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