Where Have All the Novellas Gone?

There used to be this thing that wasn’t quite a novel, but wasn’t quite a short story.

It was this marvelous thing, you could read in one sitting without feeling like you read only a tiny bit. You could get the depth of the world and the characters without being overwhelmed by the deep commitment of time involved in the story.

Where have all the novellas gone?

I look back on my love life, and most of the ones I remember fondly, though it ended, were like novellas. There was some commitment of time, a few months perhaps. We enjoyed what we had. We parted – for good or ill – on whatever terms came on the last page of our story.

I wandered Barnes and Noble this evening, searching for the novellas, finding none.

Must we marry every book? Must we have one night’s dancing with the stories in magazines?

Where have all the novellas gone?

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6 thoughts on “Where Have All the Novellas Gone?

  1. I completely agree. I love a good novella. You get the ‘wow factor’ of a short story with the character development of a novel all in one. The only novellas I’ve seen in a bookstore lately are The Old Man and the Sea, and To a God Unknown. I don’t think they keep genre novellas in bookstores anymore. It’s a shame too.

  2. Hear hear! I find myself similarly bemoaning the demise of “stand alone” novels, especially in the fantasy genre. These days if it’s not a trilogy (or more) with each book topping out over 500 pages, it’s like people think it’s no good. What ever happened to being able to tell a good, evocative story in a single installment? Not -everything- needs to be epic, yo.

  3. I miss the mighty novella too. They take up less shelf space and they’re a little cheaper than a regular paperback, yet they deliver all the story of a full novel. Oh, and they seem to sell pretty darn well in the YA/MG sections of the book store.

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