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Old 12-06-2019, 08:53 AM   #46
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Hi Vincent, I wondered if your last post was an anomaly or the first of many. Nice to see you back again.
Thanks. Figured no one would remember me

I have been here on and off for a while. I just had not posted in years.

I took some time a few years back to really dig into the craft and the business and cut back my time in forums as a result (only so many hours in a day). Then I spent a year targeting my business and launched a new series with all I knew at the time. Rocked it up the charts/etc, but it was exhausting in its own way so took some time off from marketing/etc to just write. In 2020 I plan to slowly work back to a more sustainable level of balance between business and writing.
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:00 AM   #47
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I just corrected my post to refer to Kobo page count not ADE/Kobo ... I don't know what algorithm Kobo use. It's not ADE - or not for my books, which come out significantly lower in ADE than my print editions. (eg: 384 print & Amazon, 485 Kobo, 324 ADE).

Which is probably getting off track for the thread, except that it shows how little control we as authors have over what the retails display.
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:06 AM   #48
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I just corrected my post to refer to Kobo page count not ADE/Kobo ... I don't know what algorithm Kobo use. It's not ADE - or not for my books, which come out significantly lower in ADE than my print editions. (eg: 384 print & Amazon, 485 Kobo, 324 ADE).

Which is probably getting off track for the thread, except that it shows how little control we as authors have over what the retails display.
So I looked on Kobo, it says 548 pages for my example book. Still pretty close to the "real print page count" of 566 pages. Barnes and Noble list it as "2MB" which of course is about the worst stat you can give.
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:06 AM   #49
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Thanks. Figured no one would remember me
[...]In 2020 I plan to slowly work back to a more sustainable level of balance between business and writing.
I've been looking over at your site occasionally to see what you were up to, and was pleased to see you seemed to be finding some success.

Balance, yes, that would be good. I've written so little in the last few years it's almost embarrassing to keep participating here in Writer's Corner. But for now at least I have to work while the work is there. Previously, I had gotten so caught up in writing that I'd almost forgotten that I only had time for it because I had so little work happening.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:44 PM   #50
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I thought Amazon explicitly used the print edition page count where available; I don't know what they do if there is no print edition, or if there are multiple print editions.
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Both my paperback and hardcover for the book mentioned have 566 pages, and both are on Ingram. So not sure what that means. But there you have it
For KF7 and KF8 books, page number information is in a <bookname>.apnx file. the apnx file is binary, but there is some information as text near the top of the file. Two of the text fields are labeled "asin", the first time, it is amazon's ASIN, the second is the 10 digit ISBN for the print edition used to generate amazons page numbers for the book.

I have found that it is very common for amazon's page numbers to start correct but eventually some error creeps in and throws the numbers off for the rest of the book. Sometimes the numbers are completely screwed up.

If an ebook from the author or publisher is in EPUB format with a proper pagelist or page-map, kindlegen will generate correct amazon page number.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:57 PM   #51
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Just to confuse the issue still further, here are some authentic word counts I have dredged up, all from well-known authors:

Get Shorty (Elmore Leonard): 80,000
Lassie Come-Home (Eric Knight): 55,000
Captain Blood (Rafael Sabatini): 114,000
Shane (Jack Schaefer): 45,000
The Nonesuch (Georgette Heyer): 105,000
A Certain Smile (Françoise Sagan): 31,000
The Executioners, aka Cape Fear (John D MacDonald): 55,000
Beau Geste (P C Wren): 139,000
The Scarlet Pimpernel (Baroness Orczy): 84,000
The Toff and the Stolen Tresses (John Creasey): 55,000
Going Postal (Terry Pratchett): 116,000
The Stars are Dark (Peter Cheyney): 76,000
Lady Chatterly's Lover (D H Lawrence): 117,000
Skylark 3 (E E [Doc] Smith): 83,000
Cakes and Ale (Somerset Maugham): 70,000
Leave it to Psmith (P G Wodehouse): 88,000
The Saint in New York (Leslie Charteris): 72,000
Treasure of the Sierra Madre (B Traven): 112,000
You Only Live Twice (Ian Fleming): 66,000
Unreliable Memoirs (Clive James): 68,000
The Fabulous Riverboat (Philip José Farmer): 85,000
Maigret and the Killer (Georges Simenon): 42,000
The Case of the Footloose Doll (Erle Stanley Gardner): 55,000
Nature Girl (Carl Hiaasen): 95,000
Flying Finish (Dick Francis): 80,000
Farewell My Lovely (Raymond Chandler): 81,000
Cannery Row (John Steinbeck): 50,000
Raise the Titanic! (Clive Cussler): 110,000
But, the problem is that these word counts are probably just the story and does not include anything else like the copyright, list of other books, previews, etc.
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Old 12-06-2019, 05:09 PM   #52
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But, the problem is that these word counts are probably just the story and does not include anything else like the copyright, list of other books, previews, etc.
Wolfie, dear:

Nobody gives two s**ts about the word count of the front- or back-matter, snookums. It's not going to significantly affect the reader's enjoyment, or lack thereof, of the story, nor how long it will take to read. It's JUST frontmatter. Only in rare circumstances does the FM add anything worth reading.

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Old 12-07-2019, 06:43 AM   #53
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Word count is supposed to be just the story text, not any copyright, series listings, other books, blurb, about the author, reviews, publishing history, contents list, headers or footer.
It may include the words "The End" if the book has them. Chapter titles, chapter preambles etc would be included, if they exist.

I'm not sure about notes, preface and an appendix.
A prologue is really chapter 1 by another name and epilogue the last chapter, so they are counted. We recommend against using those terms for the story before the main story and the story after the main story as it seems some people confuse preface and prologue and many think both can be skipped.
I do think a preface can be skipped and if added by the publisher to a later edition should always be read after the book as it's likely to have 3rd party opinion and spoilers.

LOTR is an example of a book where the notes / appendix maybe should be counted?
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Old 12-08-2019, 04:38 AM   #54
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All of the ones I gave were of text and table of contents only. Nothing else.
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Old 12-08-2019, 06:25 AM   #55
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All of the ones I gave were of text and table of contents only. Nothing else.
And presumably rounded or truncated to even thousands - since it seems extremely unlikely they all ended at x000 words. Such rounding is likely to be more significant than the amount of (relevant) front matter and back matter present in the majority of cases.

Which only leaves argument over whether to count forewords, author notes and appendices (I would). There should be no argument about excluding previews of other books because the description "other books" seems pretty self-explanatory.

But my guess is that the above is mostly irrelevant to word-counts given by retailers like Kobo. I don't know for 100% certain, but it only make sense these are automatically generated, so in that case they will be counting what they find inside the file - previews, blurbs, ads, whatever.
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Old 12-08-2019, 06:31 AM   #56
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LOTR is an example of a book where the notes / appendix maybe should be counted?
Speaking as one for whom they were the reason I read it 18 times from the age of 7, yes.
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