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A Picture Book Has How Many Pages?

Buried in the Slushpile

If you type “how many pages does a picture book have” in a search engine, nearly every result will tell you that there are 32.

So, are Picture Books 32 Pages?

Yes, and also no.

Wait, hear me out.

Ok, technically, yes, picture books are 32 pages. Like almost all print books, picture books come in a page count that is a multiple of 8. So, although you will see a picture book that has 24 or 48 pages, the standard for a picture book is 32 pages.

That’s not what I’m talking about though.

You see, oftentimes when I see picture book manuscripts from authors, they have broken up the story into 32 pages. And this makes sense because picture books are 32 pages.

Except they’re not.

The story portion of the picture book is only 30 pages. You have to set aside a page for the title page (that first page with the book’s title, exactly like it sounds) and another page for the copyright page. In picture books, you’ll also usually find the dedications on the copyright page too.

And that leaves your story only 30 pages of the children’s book. And that 30 pages includes any back matter like glossaries or information pages – meaning if you have those, your story may not even have 30 pages.

So, when you are breaking up your story to see if you have enough for a full picture book, you want to break it up over 30 pages rather than 32.

Because although yes, picture books are 32 pages, only 30 of those pages are for you.

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