Word count & readability

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Word count

Please input text to calculate word count.


Please input text to assess readability.


Please input text to estimate times and pages.

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Why count words?

Beyond its mystique, writing books is a game of numbers. If you plan on writing a novel, you need to hit at least the 70,000 words mark. It's a prosaic (sic!) concept, but the nitty-gritty of writing isn't all glamorous. The fact remains that you must accrue a certain number of words, if you're after bragging rights for writing a book.

You can count your words using tools scattered all over the internet, or your editor's clunky features, or you can use Novelitist, and integrate word counting and other advanced writing statistics into your writing process, in real-time, while setting word count goals that you can then track seamlessly.

Readability scores as guidelines

It's a good idea to write at a readability level appropriate for your target audience, or to simply challenge yourself to write the most widely readable book you can. There are several readability scores that aim to automatically asses the readability of your work. Here we're using the Automated Readability Index, the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level, and the Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease scores. Some score systems clash with each other sometimes—that's why we use more than one. Using your own judgement as well, you can get an accurate idea about the readability of your text.

Remember that readability scores are mere guides. Two literary giants, Ernest Hemingway and Marcel Proust, write at different readability levels as calculated by standard readability scores. This doesn't make one writer better than the other, just different in their own greatness.

Automatic, real-time readability score calculation as you type comes bundled with Novelitist, and you can easily set readability goals as well, to keep yourself consistent.

Consuming your writing

If you publish it, your text is meant to be consumed by others, either by reading, or by having it read to them, as is the case with audiobooks. In the real world, this has relevance. People have limited time. Psychologically, a high page-count tome may deter some readers from picking it up. On the contrary, too thin a volume may induce in some people the notion that the work is not worth the price. Knowing how your writing fares in these matters can help you optimize your it.

Just like with word statistics and readability scores, these consumption metrics are calculated automatically as you type in Novelitist.

It took you about two minutes to read the 386 words in the text above, easily readable by high schoolers. It would reserve two pages in a paperback book.


Although when using normal text the computation of this kind of data is accurate, calculating (and estimating) some of it can sometimes produce bizarre results for readability and consumption metrics. For example, if you write a single, continuous word (like "wordwordwordword..." repeated a thousand times), the estimated paperback pages count will still be one, even though that's clearly not the case. The paperback pages estimation is based on an average number of words per page, but you wrote only one very long word, hence the calculator assumes no more than one page. Use your judgement.

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