John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, George Orwell’s Animal Farm, Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea––what do they all have in common? They are all novellas.
What is a novella? A work of fiction, longer than a short story, shorter than a novel; a common literary genre. As you can see from the examples listed above, it’s not a new idea.
From Robert Silverberg (Sailing to Byzantium): [The novella] is one of the richest and most rewarding of literary forms…it allows for more extended development of theme and character than does the short story, without making the elaborate structural demands of the full-length book. Thus it provides an intense, detailed exploration of its subject, providing to some degree both the concentrated focus of the short story and the broad scope of the novel.
Whatever its origin or purpose, the novella is a lovely idea.
A Dozen Apologies is a collaborative* novella from Write Integrity Press. As the story begins, a beautiful young woman named Mara Adkins has lost her job, her confidence, and most of her self-esteem. She ends up back home with her parents. You can read the opening chapter here.
I was asked to contribute one chapter, creating a destination, a hero and his occupation. And the story would need to flow together with the chapters of eleven other writers. And one more thing––our readers would be asked to vote on their favorite hero. That guy will star in the final chapter and have the chance to win Mara’s heart. Sounds like fun, right? Especially since the readers––I hope that includes you––won’t know who wrote which chapter until it’s all over.
So there you have it. What began as a brilliant idea in the mind of the very talented Fay Lamb, (you can read about her idea here) and with the help of her editor, Tracy Ruckman, is now on its way to you.
I hope you’ll have time to read the chapters as they become available. And when all the chapters are posted, please vote on your favorite hero. When the votes are in, the final chapter will be added and the completed novella will be released as an ebook on Valentine’s Day. Oh, and here’s the best part of all––it will be a FREE download on February 14th, 15th, and 16th.
*produced or conducted by two or more parties working together
Jennifer Hallmark – God’s Plans vs. My Own
4 thoughts on “What is a Novella?”
Excellent explanation, Betty! I had no idea all of those books were novellas!
I didn't either till I looked up novella. Ha ha! Betty Noyes' comment on Facebook was the inspiration for this article.
I didn't know that either. It's encouraging to know my WIP doesn't have to be 100K words. LOL
Great job, Betty!
That was a great piece Betty. You did well in explaining the differences. Thank you for writing this.
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