Chapters are a great way to control the rhythm of a long story, and a lot of
writers frankly use them to make a story easier to read. Max Brand and
Alexander Dumas Sr. were master at this.
I'm a big advocate of chapters. Ever try to read Moll Flanders? One long
slog, IMO. Chapters leave handy places to stop reading, break up the
narrative into cohesive sections, and help create reference points as one
Avian pointed out. I've read books with 12 chapters and equally-long books
with 50 chapters. I've read chapters of 50 words or less, and some that were
as sprawling as Texas. Each worked for me in the context of the novel. If
someone wants to get cute and literary and eschew chapters (as well as
punctuation, capitals, paragraphs, etc.), be my guest. I won't read it.
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