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Is This Idea Any Good?

Discussion in 'Writers on the Web' started by KaeSeven7, Jun 6, 2020.

  1. KaeSeven7

    KaeSeven7 Dreamer

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    Sorry if this belongs in the marketing section - I'm completely new here and really hope this doesn't get taken down!

    I've been considering this website/blog idea for a while now, but could do with some feedback on whether to make it a reality.

    It would be a website to post my story, chapter by chapter, as I write it, before it's been properly edited. I'm a perfectionist but am happiest when engaging with people, so thought this could be a fun way of gaining feedback and confidence before the stressful editing process, and a way of keeping writing fun for me. I'd like to include a comments section so people can interact very easily. In the end, when the book is finished, I would then edit it and release it in physical form on a store on the website, allowing it to be different enough after editing for successful sales in its physical form (as physical book publishing is very important to me).

    I've also considered eventually expanding the idea to collaborate with other writers, and potentially collaborate with readers/fans, so they can be involved in the writing process. Maybe add in some competitions, and try to create a sense of community. I generally write dark fantasy and spooky fiction etc, so I'd like to keep the site centred on this idea if possible.

    I'm looking to hopefully become a full-time writer in the future so was considering a small fee (once I have given people a taste of the site of course), that would equate to the cost of a published book once all is finished. And I would be looking to start this as soon as possible based on people's tips and tricks.

    Looking forward to hearing everyone's opinions! Thanks!
     
  2. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

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    There's really no reason not to do it. You might find no one participates, or that you're plagued with nettrolls, or that it turns out to be more work than fun. But why not find out? Because you might also find it's a roaring success with a great community and is spiritually rewarding.

    Only one way to know.
     
  3. KaeSeven7

    KaeSeven7 Dreamer

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    Thanks! I was never going to assume it would take off swimmingly, and I am very unaffected by online trolls, so it does seem as if I'll have to give it a shot to see. It's just attracting the initial traffic that becomes the issue. Gotta start somewhere though!
     
  4. It is sort of the idea behind web comics. You post a new installment regularly and attract an audience that way. It works.

    The thing here is that I suspect it works best with second or later draft writing, depending on the quality of your first draft of course. When people need to show up regularly to read something, then it has to be good quality or they need a good reasons to visit the site (for instance if they like you as a person)

    I remember that a long time ago, Stephen king did something like this for one of his works.
     
  5. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

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    >It's just attracting the initial traffic that becomes the issue.
    Getting noticed is the battle we all face. If I had good advice on that score, I'd gladly sell it to you. <grin>
     
  6. In this case, it would be the same as with any other blog. You create content and at first you're just talking to yourself. And slowly readers find you and hopefully stick around. Just one or two at a time. The trick is to publish a lot and to do so frequently and regularly. If you post each day without fail, then readers will come to expect that and will come back frequently. If you publish once a month then people will read what you have posted and then forget about you since there is no new content.
     
  7. KaeSeven7

    KaeSeven7 Dreamer

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    I see what you mean, though if I were to post chapter by chapter, or extract by extract, I couldn't guarantee I'd have enough content to post daily for any longer than a month or two. Guess I'll have to try and see what works out and what doesn't.
     
  8. It doesn't have to be daily. You could do it once or twice a week. But consider your own behavior. Do you follow a blog? And if so, how often do you check it? I've read a bunch of blogs. And what I've noticed is that I tend to read the archive until I've read everything that seems interesting and then, if no new content appears regularly I just forget the blog exists. So, consistency is key. If you post each monday, then readers will come to expect an update on monday. And if you miss a monday, then there's a good chance people will forget to check next monday as well.

    I would personally go for twice a week. If you have about 60 entries then that gives you half a year worth of content. That's pretty good, and more than a lot of blogs manage. Also, it gives you enough time to come up with the next thing.

    For the business side of things, you could look at web-comics. One I follow is Tuesday 9 June 2020 (though that one just ended after 20! years). There's a few options:
    - patreon: people are willing to support content creators just because they deserve to be supported
    - published books: people like having the complete thing once it's done. Especially if you include extra's (for instance, if you give something extra chapters or more editing or whatever)
    - merchandising
    - adds

    Think of it like a blog. It will take a lot of time before it's profitable enough to make a living off of it. I think the writer of Schlock mercenary took 3 years of daily entries before he had enough of a following to make a living with it. And I would argue that it was easier to get noticed in 2000 than it is now.
     
    Onemaus likes this.
  9. KaeSeven7

    KaeSeven7 Dreamer

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    Thanks! This is more what I was looking for. I'd love to upload on a regular basis once I figure out, as you said, how often that will be. It would be no less than once weekly I expect. I don't follow blogs as such - partially why I'm considering making one, as they say to create things you yourself would enjoy - but I follow similar things on social medias that require me checking, so I understand your points completely.

    20 years is one long run! And the business side of things are all great too, as I said, its mainly getting people to know about the blog that I'm a little stuck with. I'd love to write for myself and would be happy to start that way, but at the same time, I'd like to be doing something to encourage an audience, whether it happens or not. I wouldn't be searching for views or money if you see what I mean, but hearing that people are reading or even enjoying my work is one of the highlights of my experiences! I've considered a social media page or two that I actually enjoy using, to carry out the same sort of publicity and lead to the blog itself?

    Merchandising and the published book would have to come wayyyy later in the process unfortunately, because I've obviously got to have the book completed first! And Patreon has always been a grey zone for me - I completely understand supporting content creators you love, and I would happily do so myself in certain situations, but I always feel bad considering it for myself when I am hardly a professional yet. And even then!
     
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