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Thread: Serialisation

  1. #1


    When I conceived the story that became my planned trilogy of novels I originally thought of it as a TV series and the first novel that I wrote certainly retained aspects of that. For example, how often does a novel mention the music playing in the background? It is part of my personal legend that I actually impossibly based it on the TV series Person of Interest that wasn't broadcast until after I'd written it, but this may explain why my apparently prescient thoughts took this serial form. I even contacted an established scriptwriter before starting to write the story in novel form to determine the best way to handle it.

    I have abandoned writing the trilogy now because I simply don't have the time, although in my mind the story has now matured to the point where I could rewrite the whole thing far better, especially after having discussed writing issues here on WF for some years. Even though I don't have much time to spare for the writing I am wondering whether a solution would be to serialise the long story. It doesn't divide well into books of conventional novel length anyway as each part is shorter than a novel.

    I have in the past referred to the convention on novel length as "Gutenberg's guillotine" as it has more to do with physical books than anything else and is inclined to slice off essential parts from a body of work. Reading articles on the Internet about the advantages of serials I see that nowadays readers of E-publications actually prefer short episodes that they can conveniently read on a tablet device or smartphone in a relatively short time. Also writing a serial allows one's work to get to readers sooner. Certainly if I were to rewrite my original overlong novel now it might be years before I completed it as the revised version will be far longer. I don't even anticipate finding enough readers to merit doing so even though I have had favourable reactions from the few who have read the original, so this is another reason for not spending time on it.

    Just for convenience when the subject of my novel happened to arise in conversation, I made it available for free download on its own website although I never promoted it in any wholesale manner. I've removed it from that website now. I could start publishing the new version there in serial form as a replacement or I could put it on a public site with an existing readership. I saw that there's one such called but this is, as most are, an American concern with all the normal inconvenience regarding payments received for a British resident, not that I'm bothered about receiving income and I would actually prefer to retain the control that my private site provides. Apart from WF I don't socialise on social media websites, so don't have a platform from which to promote my site and don't have the time to do so either. My situation may be unusual or conversely typical of other members - I don't know - but I'd welcome anyone's views on the general subject of serialisation for self-publication.

    One unique advantage of using my dedicated website is that I can also serialise there the parallel true story of how I discovered the events in my own future life which apparently inspired the original story, but that's literally another story - or maybe not entirely.
    'Sharing an experience creates a reality.' Create a new reality today.
    'There has to be some give and take.' If I can take my time I'm willing to give it.
    'The most difficult criticism that a writer has to comprehend is silence.' So speak up.

  2. #2
    I know a few authors and publishers who instead of publishing a novel, they serialised its chapters on Amazon etc, and they did okay. There's also a fair few authors who do work for free and will sometimes use their website or work on a forum in their genre. The former does well if you've either got a good social presence and following, or you've got a good publishing company behind you who had their own established readership. The latter can work well, again, if you've got an established readership, or the forum you use has good presence with readers. Or there's the Patreon answer! I know a good few authors who charge a monthly subscription, and they offer free chapters, merchandise each month.

    I'd consider how much traffic you get to your site, but to be honest, if this is the way you want to go, then I can't see why not. A good way to help it work would be to drive traffic to your site, like with author interviews etc in your genre. That way you're not only highlighting other authors but also drawing their readers to your site.

    Otherwise, the net's a huge place, with a lot of white noise going on. It can feel like you're shouting into the wind at times. I don't blog because of it. Most free work I'll do through giveaways on the likes of Prolific Works, where you can join giveaways with other authors or set up your own.
    "You don't wanna ride the bus like this,"

    Mike Posner.

  3. #3
    I originally planned on releasing Pinocchio as a serial because, at the market's time, it seemed the easiest, bestest way for me to get paid regularly (but it meant I'd have to cram a ton of potentially unnecessary erotica into it).
    "Ammonia will disinfect sin."

    "Art is life, just add bull****."
    --Chris Miller


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