Writers Breaking the Rules: Alan Moore’s ‘Jerusalem’

Kristen Twardowski


In publishing, there are written and unwritten rules that authors must follow. These standards include genre specific word counts, paragraph lengths, font styles, and other assorted information. As much as authors may want to break from canon – what if this a romance needs to be 250,000 words? – doing so will greatly diminish the likelihood that a manuscript will be published.

But there are always a few rule breakers. Alan Moore is one of them.

Today is the official US release date of Alan Moore’s magnum opus Jerusalem. Reviewers describe the book as “epic” and “stupefying in scope”, and they aren’t wrong. The work is over 1200 pages and 600,000 words long, which is about six times the length of a standard novel. (To compare, Jerusalem towers over even other long titles; J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is 257,045 words, and George R.R. Martin’s…

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