1. Dave Gregory
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    Dave Gregory Member

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    Publishing online in short sections

    Discussion in 'Electronic Publishing' started by Dave Gregory, Sep 21, 2013.

    This has probably been asked a few times, but since this bleedin' book is taking me centuries to write, I'm wondering about publishing the first part online (only amounts to about 120 pages in average paperback layout) for a low cost and seeing how well received it is whilst I get on with the next part.

    Is that really the 'done thing' though? TV series do it all the time - the story gets to a certain point, then you have to wait six months or more for the next bit. I'm just wondering if it's an acceptable approach in the brave new world of e-publishing or if it'll gain me ire?
     
  2. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Serialized novels are more common than you'd think in the self-publishing world. Amazon has a program called Kindle Serials for serialized novels. It's a bit different than what you're saying, though. In Kindle Serials, readers pay a one-time price for the book, and as the author publishes new chapters, the readers' kindles are automatically updated. If this is what you're aiming for, then you may want to look up this program.

    However, to me, it sounds like what you're doing is publishing a series of short novels, which is a bit different than the serialized novel concept. If your book is interesting enough, I think readers would be willing to wait. But I would recommend completing the novel and publishing it in its entirety. That's just my opinion as a reader.

    By the way, in the publishing industry, we use word count, not the number of pages, to talk about how long a book is. As an example, depending on the font and page layout, 120 pages could be either 60,000 words (novel) or 30,000 words (novella).
     
  3. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yes, it is done, but I think 6 months is an awfully long time to wait for the next part of a novel. I think readers would lose interest or forget. You could do a week, or maybe even a month, making sure to send out reminders to anyone who follows the novel, or via twitter, etc. I'm sure you realize, also, that by doing this, you won't be able to get the novel traditionally published, since it will already be available online.
     
  4. JayG
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    JayG Banned Contributor

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    • I'm wondering about publishing the first part online (only amounts to about 120 pages in average paperback layout) for a low cost and seeing how well received it is whilst I get on with the next part.

    Put a few thousand words up here, where people are actually seeking something to read and critique. And stop thinking in terms of Story, with that upper case S. It's moment-to-moment reading pleasure—entertainment—that keeps a reader turning pages. So work on it being an exciting read from line one.

    Publishing a chunk on a site like Smashwords is a waste of time. Why? How many times this year did you go to an online self-publishing site seeking an unfinished and unedited book, hoping to read a few chapters?

    Write it, debug it and add sparkle, edit it a few million times, give it to beta readers, and then maybe you're ready to submit. I know that's a slow process. And I know you want to see something that says you're on the right track now, but if it was easy we'd all be famous.
     

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