I was contemplating serializing a novellette on the website – basically publishing it in 1500 word segments, then when it was complete, taking all those posts down and publishing it. This would, in theory, have given my readers here a freebie. But there wasn’t much interest, and after chatting with a friend and fellow reader, I realized that serials and snippets aren’t working like they once were.
So why? I know for me, it’s because I’m spoiled for choice. I have plenty of complete stories and books waiting on my time to read them, without remembering to go looking for snips and serials. If I am patient, those will be fully complete, and I’ll read them then. I’m a greedy reader. If the story really captures me, I want to immerse myself into it and not look up until I get to the ending (usually with a little whimper of ‘why isn’t there more?’
It used to be that I’d haunt the Baen forums and Jiltanith site for snippets. I had favorite authors who would release their work in progress a drip at a time, and I’d grab it, read it, and wait for more. Now, I have so many options to read, I don’t feel like doing this any longer. If I’m looking for a new author to read who is ‘just like…’ then I ask on social media. Thanks to KU, I can usually sample their work for free before I invest in a book I might not like – which was part of the snippet process before. If a book didn’t catch me quickly, I’d wander off, stop reading snips, and not buy it when it was released (unless it was in the Baen Bundle, and I buy those rarely any more. Pretty much only if there’s a Ringo or Correia coming out. Ok, and Drake).
It’s a changing world, and I’m trying to keep up with it. Heaven knows I’m never going to get out in front of it. But I can look, and see that reading habits are changing, formed and re-formed as the publishing industry itself is remade in Amazon’s image. Having the story up for sale might not make me much money, but not much is more than none. Also, having a new release will keep my other books fresh in people’s minds when I do finish a new novel.
Which means I won’t serialize Snow in Her Eyes. I’ll release it into the wild sometime next month, as a fully complete thing, with a cover, even. Heh.
And now I shall go contemplate why I write what I write. And how to write more, because I need to get a novel out there. Now that this short story which ate my brain is nearly finished!