I always wondered how long a chapter should be. Now I realise they can be anything – how long do you want it to be? What length chapters do you like in books? I’ve recently released I like short chapters as you feel like you’re actually getting somewhere; making your way through the book. From a writing point of view, it also makes it more likely people are going to read on after ending a chapter. If its a couple of pages long, I find I’m usually like ‘ah, I may as well read one more chapter as its so short’. But if its page and pages and pages and pages, you’re probably going to stick your bookmark in and actually have to set aside time to read.
There are some books such as Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices which have incredibly long chapters and generally there are lots of cliffhangers in amongst. The chapters feel kind of like they have to be there because books have chapters, but they don’t really need to be.
And then there are others like James Dashner’s Maze Runner trilogy, and Beth Revis’ Across the Universe trilogy which are incredibly short. Some of the latter’s are maybe two lines long.
So it depends on how it works in a story. Personally, my chapters naturally finish at around 2000 words. But then you get the crazy 3000 or 1000 word ones and I’ve also read books that have a mix of long and short chapters. So it really can be anything.
What length chapters do you generally write? And what length do you like to read?