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50 Novellas and Short Novels – a List, Courtesy of Flavorwire

April 21, 2014

50 Incredible Novels Under 200 Pages from ~

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Today, I came across an article at FLAVORWIRE that lists 50 novellas or short novels recommended as must-reads. I’ve read some already but I think I’ll read several more through the spring and summer, both for enjoyment and as a study in this shorter form of the novel.

Many of my earliest favorite novels were short novels or novellas. Flowers for Algernon (Daniel Keyes), Of Mice and Men (John Steinbeck), The Old Man and The Sea (Ernest Hemingway), The Great Gatsby (F. Scott Fitzgerald) come to mind immediately – all of which are on the list except for Flowers For Algernon – a book that I think should be on the list. (Be sure to read the comments after the article, link below, as many more books are recommended.)

When I began writing, I didn’t expect to write novellas but my first two novels (Love’s Compass and The Setting of the Sun) ended up fitting neatly into the novella length. When I finished each of them, the word count happened to be at about 25,000. I love writing in the parameters of the novella. It fits my style of writing.

I think of myself as being more of a storyteller than a literary writer – though I do think there are literary elements in my books. My phrase, sentence, paragraph and chapter structure is simple, direct and short. My focus is on the story. So, the novella was a natural for me. Though that’s not to say all novellas have the same style of writing as I have. I think, too, that I have a cadence that is comfortable for the reader.

At the time I wrote my first two books (2007-2010), no one was interested in novellas – “no one” meaning in the publishing industry. So, I made myself write a full length novel of 65,000 words. It didn’t feel as natural to me, but I did write a story (Love, Topaz) that I think is true to my basic style, just longer.

Lately, I’ve been hearing more about novellas. They seem to be making a comeback! Yay! I was really encouraged to come across Flavorwire’s list.

Here’s the list, which has fun and clever descriptions with each book.

50 Incredible Novels Under 200 Pages

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