The internet has changed the way we tell stories. For dozens of web serial authors on WordPress and other blogging sites, blogging is the new way to make a name for oneself as a writer.
The internet has forever changed the way we tell stories. This change is most apparent through the web serial.
The web serial is taking over online fiction. Dozens of young authors are now rejecting conventional publishing. Instead, they tell their stories in platforms such as blogs.
The web serial gives authors more freedom
Many serials are nothing more than fan fiction. Yet, some are creating fandoms of their own.
John McCrae’s first novel, Worm, lasts for dozens of chapters and developed a loyal fandom.
One reason for the discrepancy is the total freedom that comes with the web serial medium. With no sort of censorship, the author of a web serial can do whatever they want.
In the hands of the right writer, this freedom means more room for invention. As the web serial is written piece by piece, some writers find that they have more space to develop the story
An excellent example of this is the ongoing web serial Touch, whose author goes by the name Rhythm.
The story centers on a boy who learns to fly after a traumatic incident. It also deals with taboo topics such as sexual assault in a setting more suited to a YA fantasy.
Some of the best web serial stories use this space to develop massive, intricate fantasy worlds. They might even rival George R. R. Martin’s Westeros.
This freedom doesn’t always pay
There’s something wonderful about telling your story on your own website. You can say whatever you want, and anyone in the world who has internet access can enjoy it for free.
But this model doesn’t make money. For many web serial authors, this isn’t an issue; writing may be a hobby for them.
For others, however, giving your audience a free story without going broke can be a problem.
There are ways around this. Just as many bloggers have made a living using their blogs, it’s possible to make money writing a web serial.
Many bloggers have monetized their web serial
John McCrae’s web serial stories include ‘bonus’ stories in exchange for donations.
Worm has over twenty “donation interludes,” each written from the perspective of a side character.
Bonuses like this can allow a writer to get paid for their work while still keeping their web serial free to read for most of their audience.
In addition, many authors use websites like Patreon or Kickstarter to fund their projects. Patreon has thousands of users working on their own stories.
Other authors may monetize their websites once their web serial has attracted a large enough audience.
WordPress, in particular, is home to many web serial authors whose books have made it into print.
Writers can use the web serial as a stepping stone to getting published
Many authors who began with a blog have published their own books. WordPress is home to dozens of authors who show off their work online to boost their book sales.
Claire Fuller, the author of Our Endless Numbered Days, writes short fiction and promotions for her books on her WordPress blog.
In addition, many younger authors have found a publishing deal for a story that began as a web serial on a WordPress blog or a Wattpad account.
The internet has changed everything about how we tell stories – how we write them, read them, promote them.
As the world moves more and more online, many new writers may find that blogging and the web serial format have many opportunities to offer.