Monday, June 17, 2019

gonna have to do some R&D

How long—how many pages long—is the typical movie-review book? I'm almost done assembling my book's manuscript, but it's frighteningly huge. I have roughly 300 files right now, and by the time I'm done compiling, that total will be near 350, I think (I'm going backwards in time, and my movie-review blog posts have become more frequent over the years, which means that the period going backward from 2011 to 2003 will have relatively few reviews). Each review's length varies, but many are around the five-page range (single-spaced, 12-point Times New Roman, US-letter paper). Some are as short as a single page.* That gives us a median of—what—three pages, right? Assuming the median is close to the mean, then 350 files times 3 pages per file equals 1050 pages. That's quite a tome.

I can try whittling the page count down. One thing to do will be to change the font to something naturally more compact, like Garamond, and also to shrink the font size from 12 points to 10. The problem, though, is that I'll also be shrinking the page size down to something like B5 or B6, so I might end up with the same hellaciously huge page count.

Since I'll be rereading all these reviews, I'll doubtless find ones whose prose I'm not proud of, and those reviews will be unsentimentally chucked. That ought to whittle the book's size down by a couple hundred pages. I could also simply stop compiling now and publish only from a restricted date range, e.g., from 2012 to 2019. Much to think about.

Putting the manuscript together is the easy part. Editing's going to be a bitch.

ADDENDUM: having just done some R&D, I see that many movie-review compilations have page counts ranging from 900 to 2000, so maybe I won't have to whittle that much.

*Then again, some of my articles, like "The Tao of Chance," print out to 14 pages.


Charles said...

I don't think you should cut at all. I was in the market for a new doorstop anyway.

Kevin Kim said...

Well, when it's finally ready, your doorstop will be for free, and it'll also be signed.

Charles said...

I am touched--I have always wanted a signed doorstop!