I know from writing a book myself, not to mention it being a hot topic during book coaching calls with clients: It’s frustrating that there is no “perfect” or even absolutely correct word count target for your book. (How can I possibly create a writing schedule or figure out how long it will take to write my book if I don’t know how many words I need?) “Enough words to cover your topic” sounds like the kind of smart-aleck answer that would’ve gotten me in trouble in high school. But it’s true.
It’s frustrating that there is no “perfect” or even absolutely correct word count target for your book. - @jodibrandon
Will you settle for some guidelines?
I can provide a few of those. The two common trim sizes for nonfiction books are 5 x 8 and 6 x 9. Think about which you prefer, since you’ll choose for yourself if you’re self-publishing. The 5 x 8 trim size means about 250 words per page; too many more than that and you need a smaller, less-readable font in a print book. A 100-page book would be, then, about 25,000 words; a 150-page book would be roughly 37,500 words. For the larger, 6 x 9 trim size, would be about 300 words per page. These books are generally heftier in general, so for a 150-page book you can target 45,000 words and 60,000 words for a 200-page book.
Don’t let these large word count averages scare you. As an entrepreneur, you already have a content bank that you can draw from and repurpose into your book manuscript. (And I bet it’s way bigger than you think it is.) Think about the following sources just to get your wheels turning; there are many more:
- Blog posts
- Podcast interviews
- Webinar content
- Email newsletter content
As an entrepreneur, you already have a content bank that you can draw from and repurpose into your book manuscript. - @jodibrandon
Let me know in the comments what other sources you can think of for repurposing content!