With ebooks we run into one very big difficulty: reader understanding how long or short a story is.
Some retailers understand this dilemma. On Omnilit and All Romance eBooks, there is a field in which to put the the word count of the work. Smashwords estimates the word count of the entire ebook when it converts your Word file into all the various ebook formats.
An ebook doesn’t have pages as physical books do. At the most they have ‘locations’ and then story separations such as chapters. As writers, we are accustomed to keeping track of word count for several reason. For queries, they are needed to let the potential publisher know how long a work is. For writers they are often used to quantify writing progress per day, week, month, and year.
However, word count means nothing to the average consumer.
Because of this, I have been placing in the product description not only the word count, but also the approximate page count using the standard 250 words per page in a manuscript. This way I could communicate to possible readers exactly what they are getting.
Today I noticed something interesting:
I’m not sure how long it’s been there, as I don’t go to my book’s product pages all the time, but there it is. An estimated page length on all of the ebooks.
I do wish this information would be repeated down in the regular ebook information (and in larger type), but I can see why they put it on top. It’s seen the moment a browser hits the page.
I still intend to put the length information in the description, as I believe this small typeface could easily be missed. Also, I estimate the page length of the story itself, and not everything as it looks like Amazon does. By everything, I mean not only the story, but also the title page, acknowledgments, dedications, copyright pages, and so on.
By the way, as shown in the screenshot, “Glint of a Suncatcher” is available free for a short time. Grab it while you can!