Royal Road Legends Advice?

5 years ago | Jim Zoetewey (Moderator)

As of today, I joined Royal Road, and intend to publish Legion Nothing there until either 1) I realize that it's not worth the effort or 2) I'm done.

I know that some people here are posting over there as well. Any recommendations for how to go about getting your story well known there? My current plan is to post daily up to the point where I catch up to my current serial. Then I'll post twice a week like I do normally, but I'll deliberately stay a week (possibly more) behind my website, encouraging people to go there.

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Page: 12


  1. Chrysalis (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    I don't have any advice beyond updating daily. It really does seem to help. Good luck!

    Do you know how to convert HTML / Word files to BBcode?

    Anathema, a web serial about the effect superpowers would have on our world.
  2. unice5656 (Moderator)

    Posted 5 years ago

    Update frequency is basically number one on RRL. If you do that, you're pretty much 90% of the way there.

    A few other things you could try:
    - To get even more updates, if your chapters are long enough, you might consider actually breaking them up into smaller chunks. A lot of the stories on the top weekly fiction list have daily or twice-daily updates of only a couple hundred words. Of course, this is your personal decision, as where you end a chapter does affect how the reader experiences the story. I personally update once a month with a 3k word chapter, and I do well enough
    - Participate in the forums and link to your story in the signature. The vast majority of RRL readers actually don't go on the forums and only read, but you will get a couple of readers this way
    - There's actually a Promote Your Webfiction section in the forum where you can post your story synopsis. However, there is a "no bump" rule, so unless one of your fans goes there and starts discussing your story, it's very easy to get lost in the huge number of threads there
    - Make sure your fiction is tagged properly so that someone using Advanced search can find it easily. Some people put every single possible tag, which I consider a bad idea, since then the reader has no idea what the story is about. Other than "mature" and "original", I'd say 3-6 tags is a good number
    - Write author's notes and get your readers involved. Let them know explicitly that you enjoy getting comments and reviews. Encourage them to rate your story. While getting on the Top Weekly Fiction list is all well and good, the list with much more longevity is the Best Rated/ Active Top 50, which involves getting good ratings, and a lot of them.
    - Participate in the writing contests. They don't happen that frequently (basically when the staff have enough time to read a bunch of crap and decide on a winner), but if you place, you'll get a feature in the news. The current contest is a fanfiction contest of a xianxia called I Shall Seal the Heavens, which you probably can't enter unless you've read the xianxia, but most of the contests have general themes that any kind of writer can join in.
    - Be aware of the reader base. It is majority male, mostly people who enjoy Korean/Japanese light novels, anime, and manga. They like action and adventure. This isn't to say that other kinds of stories can't enjoy success there, or that you should change what you're writing to suit the reader, but you can do small things like optimize your synopsis to appeal.

    Like I said though, it's 90% update frequency. As long as your story is of high enough quality that people will want to click "follow" after reading a few chapters, all you need is enough exposure to get a decent number of followers, and the Latest Updates list takes care of that.

    I've been writing a lot about RRL recently... Sorry if anyone finds it spammy.

  3. ClearMadness (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    On top of updating daily I would suggest maybe tweaking your synopsis to appeal to the user base. They tend to like their anime tropes there. Full reviews will also get you a bit of publicity as well.

    Author of The Iron Teeth, a online dark fantasy story.
  4. Sten Düring (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    Write VR or reincarnation -stories :D

  5. D. D. Webb (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    I have another question for people who've done it: Is this worthwhile?

    I've been batting around the idea of cross-posting over there, but I'm leery for several reasons. I'm not sure how much I want to seek out that community (it appears to be VERY xanxia heavy in its interests), it's one more damn thing to do every day, and it'd be splitting my readership. On the other hand, more readers are more readers.

    What kind of returns do you get in terms of reader acquisition and retention from posting there?

    The Gods are Bastards Cowboys! Demons! Elves!
  6. Chrysalis (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    I got good returns after about 3-4 weeks of updating daily. Good for me, at least - 170ish average additional views per chapter, spread across alot of chapters (about 40 or so). So like... 7000 views total? Now I'm updating weekly, and traffic has slowed down quite a bit. The glowing reviews and rating were worth it for me, though, especially considering that superhero stuff isn't exactly popular on there. The reviews are a big motivation booster.

    Your mileage may vary.

    Anathema, a web serial about the effect superpowers would have on our world.
  7. Jim Zoetewey (Moderator)

    Posted 5 years ago

    Thanks for the replies. That gives me some hope that Legion of Nothing will work okay there.

    I'm thinking that my posts are typically somewhere between 800-1500 words. That means I probably can't cut them in half, but on the other hand, I've got more than 900 already written, so posting daily won't be much of an issue.

    Hopefully some of my current audience comes from Royal Road anyway. That's what I'm guessing based on the fact that I've been getting traffic from Reddit's light novel/translation sections lately. That's one of the things that made me think it might work. Of course, that might mean people have already been exposed to it, and don't currently care.

    I may tweak the story description though. Legion of Nothing does include some anime tropes--the main character is essentially a genius inventor, there's an ongoing training/martial arts component, an immortal martial arts teacher, and so on. There's even a character who's quite deliberately a magical girl--though she only appears about five years in. Including her in the description would probably amount to false advertising.

    For what it's worth, here's the current description:

  8. cirruscloudauthor (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    I started posting mine on royalroadl a while back. Although I haven't gotten too much engagement out of it, it seems like it can be a good traffic generator. Overall it seems like it's most important to have steady updates, and it doesn't hurt to have a story that appeals to the crowd over there--like Sten said, they seem to love the Sword Art Online-esque Virtual Reality or Reincarnation stories. Good Luck!

    In Our Image: A Supernatural Web Novel/OELN
  9. unice5656 (Moderator)

    Posted 5 years ago

    @D. D. Webb

    Xianxia is actually one of the smaller genres on RRL. By far, the largest segments are VRMMORPG and reincarnation. I would say that xianxia stories come a distant fourth after those two and "summoned hero" stories, maybe even fifth after regular high fantasy. The only reason RRL is currently having a xianxia writing contest is because it's a collaboration with another site, WuxiaWorld. You may have gotten the impression that xianxia is big on RRL from that xianxia writer who came on the forums a while ago, but he's not even an RRL writer.

    That being said, there is a strong current of emotion among the reader base of being "tired" of the cliches. When you've seen the exact same intro several hundred times, it gets really old. Some readers will now only try stories if they don't fall into the aforementioned categories.

  10. D. D. Webb (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago


    My story is specifically meant to be a deconstruction; it's full of cliches, but they're there for the purpose of being examined and dismantled. And while the scope is a very broad epic fantasy, it does start out with a group of adolescents arriving at a school of adventure to discover that they mostly hate each other, before broadening to the wider plot. Maybe it would work there, after all.

    'course, I'm still hung up on "one more damn thing to do every day." It's a small thing, though. I just have to manage my emotional energy very carefully; if you haven't lived with bipolar disorder, look up "spoon theory" on Google for a brief hint what it's like.

    The Gods are Bastards Cowboys! Demons! Elves!
  11. unice5656 (Moderator)

    Posted 5 years ago

    Heh, it's up to you whether it's worth it. I just want you to make your decision knowing that RRL has over 20,000 registered users, most of them readers rather than writers, and that while the readers were originally gathered to the site through a mutual love of a certain Korean light novel, it's been over a year since RRL turned into a nexus for original fiction, and other genres can and do succeed there.

    It does sound like your story would fit right in :)

  12. t4nky (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    If you're doing previously released work, you may as well just drop in an update a day. That's worked out pretty well for me so far. Of course, when I catch up, I'm not sure it'll still work.

    "An uneducated man may rob a rail car. An educated man can steal the railway."
  13. Jim Zoetewey (Moderator)

    Posted 5 years ago

    That's basically my mindset. I've got enough for roughly 3 years of daily posting. I'll add almost another year due to writing during that period. After that, it'll update at the rate of my serial. Of course, that may not be necessary. I might get sick of it by then.

  14. J.E.Hixon (Member)

    Posted 5 years ago

    I know this was in a post someplace but I can not find it. I have been copying and pasting my story to royal road legends, but it sucks going through and re-adding all the line breaks. Does anyone have a way to make it play nice?

    Author of The Unseen War

    Grab a cup of coffee and enjoy the story.

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