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Gigi Will Know: My manuscript needs to be longer! Where can I look for an author who might collaborate with me?

"You’re asking the wrong question. Here’s the right one: Does my story need to be longer?"

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Dear Gigi,

 

What do you think about a writer seeking out a collaboration with other writers? I have an unpolished manuscript of about 22,000 words but need help doubling or tripling the word count. I’m just not that long-winded when it comes to making my story longer.

Where would I start to look for an author who might collaborate with me?

—Short-Winded

 

Dear Short-Winded,

You’re asking the wrong question. Here’s the right one: Does my story need to be longer?

What you have, at 22K words, falls solidly into the novella range. You could put together a collection of these and have something book-length. If a singular story is as long as it’s going to get, for frog’s sake, do not make the mistake of padding your story with extraneous words. That’s the worst thing you can do, and it will make for boring reading, and your book will go nowhere, and no one will buy it, and you will be sad and probably tell yourself you’re bad at this and never write again, which is 100% not what we want from this exercise.

Write the way you want to write. Don’t try to change anything for the sake of meeting some word counts.

(OK, fine, I’ll answer your question: Writers are everywhere. You can find them within your friend groups; within writing communities; with a little bit of internet elbow grease. But I really, really wouldn’t go this route: It does no honor to your voice, your story, or your reader.)

You do you,

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Gigi

 

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