I remember when I was writing Baby Grand people used to ask me all the time: Are your chapters short?
I thought it was such an odd question. I mean, of all the things to ask a writer about her work-in-progress…
I would answer, “Yes, for the most part.”
“Oh, good,” they’d say.
And then when Baby Grand was published this year, people told me how much they enjoyed the book, especially those short chapters. They said that they provided a natural place to stop reading or, perhaps more often, enticed them to read just a little bit more before going to bed.
Which is great. But I find this phenomenon so interesting. Don’t get me wrong: I think short chapters are terrific, as long as they’re tightly written and meaty. I guess with so many things vying for our attention these days, being able to read something in tidy digestible chunks is helpful. Totally.
Still, I often stop in the middle of a chapter when I read. I have no problem putting down a book at any point in the reading process, rather than only at chapter breaks. Am I weird?
How about you? Are you a strictly end-of-chapter bookmarker? Or does anything go?