When submitting to a publisher or an agent, it’s vital that your proposal and manuscript indicate the proper word count for your genre.
There are factors involved in why certain genres have varying word counts, including the cost for printing and how long a reader’s attention can be captured.
While each publisher may have their own limits and standards, this list can get you started. There are more rules for word count within sub-genres, and certain publishers may want word counts outside of this. Be sure to double check before submitting.
Nonfiction (general): 50k-60k
365 days: 250 words
52 weeks: 50k-55k
40 days: 9k-12k
Short Stories: 1000–10k. Sweet Spot: 3k–8k
Flash Fiction: 100 to 700 words
Historical: 100k–120k. Sweet Spot: 100k
Literary / Commercial / Women’s: 80k–110k. Sweet Spot: 100k
Crime Fiction: 90k to 100k
Mysteries / Thrillers / Suspense: 70k–90k
Noir and historical – 80k–90k
Fantasy: 90k–120k. Sweet Spot: 95k–100k
Science Fiction: 90k–125k
Regency Romance/Inspirational Romance – 40K+
Romantic Suspense/Paranormal Romance – 40k+
Mainstream romance novels – 70k–100k
New Adult Fiction: 60k–85k
Young Adult Fiction (YA): 50k–100. Sweet Spot: 70k-90
Middle Grade: 25k–40k. Sweet Spot: 35k
Picture Books: 50 to 1000 words. Sweet spot: 400–750 words