I ended my serial.

I put an end to "The Watchmage of Old New York." I was planning to end it after the second story arc anyway, so its not a big surprise to me. There is a third story arc, but I'm not going to bother posting it.


I realized that I am more comfortable writing in the traditional novel form, due to my tendencies of changing stories in the middle, editing and re-editing, and working from both ends at once. Also, while Jukepop Serials is a paying market (which is great), I feel like the voting system is based less on the quality of writing and more on who can spam the most.


Instead, I am rebooting the concept as a series of novels. This gives me the chance to change what I dislike (and there is a lot) and expand on the characters and especially the world they live in. As I've been writing, I've been reading up on 19th century New York City. Not only have I fallen in love with the setting, but I've realized just how inaccurate other attempts at it (Gangs of New York, Copper) have been. I want to really do it up right.


If you've read "Watchmage," thank you for your support. If you haven't, now's as good a time as any ;)


Congrats on wrappingit up and good luck with turning it into a series. I think that's a good idea.


As for the JP stuff, I'm curious about your comment since I've noticed that some of the top 30 seem more driven by votes from author's own social networks than the unbiased reader. (And yes, I agree about the spammy nature of JP folks on twitter and on Goodreads. It actually is kind of aggravating which is why I won't follow many of those authors ... just don't need constant advertising at me day after day.)


I feel very guilty when I promote my stories on facebook/twitter. Jukepop has an editor's picks page too, so talent does float a little bit, but I wish that promotion wasn't the main thrust. I don't want to knock Jukepop though. They've been very good to me, and the money coming in is a big boost in confidence, if nothing else. I suppose that this is the new paradgim for artists, where they have to shamlessly promote themselves if they want to make a living at what they love. Or has it always been this way, and I was too naive to know it?


Actually self-promotion sounds like it's something trad. pub authors must do as well... I've seen quite a few articles at ThE Passive Voice and from the husband-wife team of Dean Wesley-Smith and Kristin Rusch talking about this issue with marketing. Other than the hugest clients, mid-tier authors generally are expected to take care of their twitter/blog/facebook presence.


So - I do understand why now on social media we have this sort of spammy dynamic from writers. They just do what they think they have to and others emulate without asking themselves if it's really effective at all or not.


But as a reader and someone who has been on the internet since the mid 1990s, this is completely at odds with the internet culture. I find it annoying...


While I like JP as an app and its payment model -- until I understand JP's promotion strategy for getting new readers, I'm reluctant to pitch to them. However, that is said because I don't need income from writing right now. I really need more help finding readers... so I've made a decision to pitch another serial (totally different genre) to ChromaticPress instead.


Rather than getting into the thoughts behind that decision here, I will probably blog about it this week.


Congrats on finishing and I like your plan to write in novel-form. Serializing is fun but I'm the same way. There's something to be said about working without so much noise being thrown at you in the process.


I hope this doesn't mean you'll stop posting here, though! Good luck with the series and I hope to buy it from the shelves one day. :)


(Also yes to what SgL said. You'll have to do a lot of self-promoting even if you're published. Publishers have limited marketing budgets. I will say what helped my husband a lot was doing talks at libraries and bookstores around the country. In the beginning only maybe 1-2 people would show up. Now he speaks to crowds of sometimes 1K.)


What does your husband write, Amy?


I've been wondering about Jukepop. I've started reading a few serials on it. For a reader it's great, except for the common problem of serials that post a few chapters, get you interested, and then don't continue. That seems to be a worse problem on Jukepop than on here even. Probably because WFG requires at least three chapters or 4000 words to make the listing, and by that point the story has some momentum and more often than not will continue, at least for awhile. The other thing is the facebook popup annoyance that Wildbow mentioned in his review of Hobson & Choi. I've written to them suggesting they reconsider that. Once per session would be OK.


What I wonder is, how do they pay the authors? What's the monetization for that site? For the reader it's free, and there's not even many ads. Doesn't seem like there would be enough ad traffic to pay for much.


Anyway, I hope that if Jukepop gets more popular, readers will be finding the good serials on their own without the writers needing to flog them so hard.


Oh, I'm gonna keep posting here. I love youse guys ;)


Fiona: They pay a penny a word for the first chapter. After that, it's all based on votes. If you get into the top 30, you get 10$. Top 20 = 20$, Top 10 = 30$. Plus there are contests where the top vote getter gets a big cash bonus. I don't know where they're getting the money from, but I'm glad its there. They pay by Paypal, and while the payments are sometimes late, they always get there.


Sounds like a nice little bonus if you love to write anyway, but a lot of hassle to go to spamming everyone for a few tens of dollars.


Hm yeah I rather write for free on my website than bend over backwards for a few cups of coffee... but maybe there's some joy to that too? I dunno!


Fiona my husband writes/draws a graphic novel series called "Amulet" for Scholastic. He's awesome. ;)


Seriously? Amulet? I enjoy that series so much! That's just very very cool that your husband writes/draws that!


That might explain why there are a lot of few chapter stories. Write a wordy one and get a hand full of dollars and then move on to another once it stops paying


I think as the site grows it will be even harder, because there will be so much more competition with other writers... Even getting found would be difficult


Yeah, as another Jukepop author, I enjoy the feeling of having a platform and the slight trickle of money, but the actual voting system does seem a bit of a popularity contest at times. I've basically dealt with this by starting up a Hobson & Choi twitter account (@HobsonAndChoi, predictably) and using that to do most of my regular vote-begging, so my actual account (@NickMB) only gets a few plugs a week, normally a couple around the new episode and a couple around the #TuesdaySerial hashtag.


This makes me feel slightly less guilty, although I also feel bad having the H&C account being too spammy, so I try to post info about the serial there too fairly regularly.


But I genuinely love writing the serial, so I try not to get too hung up on the voting. I have various plans for things to do with the chapters once Jukepop's six month exclusivity on them starts running out (only a couple of months to go!) as well. Thanks to both Palladian and Wildbow for their reviews, by the way, I love feedback. All taken into account. And yes, agreeing with both Wildbow and Fiona above about the Facebook pop-ups too. Bloody hell.


Nick - I think that's a good wayt o handle it. It gives people an option between following you the person vs. the "other stuff."


AGreyWorld - It could be that or just natural attrition. A lot of the stories listed in this directory also die out. It's fairly easy to start a serial, hard to carry it forward, and very hard to complete it. I saw JP now has a 'complete' category.


Interesting about the FB thingy. I am getting my notifications mostly via email but am only following a small handful of stories. What triggered the FB alerts starting for you?


@ SgL: Every few chapter pages, the popup comes up wanting me to login to Facebook and "share" the story. Maybe if I actually did so it would go away, but I was stubborn. You don't get that?


It was every single page when I clicked through, but I use adblock plus (removing it for specific sites) and a popup blocker, so it was limited to a yellow bar popping down at the top of the browser window to notify me that something was blocked. I tried letting it through once, and saw it was a facebook sign-in. Given that Jukepop already uses up a hell of a lot of screen real estate, it was still noticeable. I guess, since it didn't register me as having visited/seen the page in question, it kept trying (and the yellow bar kept appearing).


I would guess this is a part of Jukepop's monetization. They sell information about the people who sign in to facebook, who in turn collects it and sells to corporations, ad agencies and information farms.


I didn't get it when I went to read a single chapter update, but when reading a story from the beginning it was quite annoying.


I don't know what info Jukepop could sell - that this person likes reading? Facebook already has a lot more info about my likes and dislikes and whatnot than Jukepop does. But maybe. I'm still curious about how Jukepop manages to pay authors. I think it's great that they do, although they probably need to rethink the system a bit to encourage authors to continue even if they're not in the top 30.


As I understand it, if Jukepop's doing what I think they're doing, they'd be collecting not just information about what you're reading, but details about the sites (and kind of sites) you're coming from, third party cookies, reading patterns (times of day, frequency, speed), whether you click on ads, etc.


Through this, they'd then sell information to Facebook. It's paltry for one user, but over many users? Facebook and other corporations that aggregate data on possible consumers hunger for that stuff. The fact that you'd be using social media to promote votes works on multiple levels (studying what gets votes, as well as seeing where a given element fits into the social network or a set of demographics). This paints a bigger, smarter picture and that helps companies know where to target ads.


They probably don't have a file on you, specifically. Probably. It's all models on populations and on getting as accurate an assessment as they can about a given demographic (this being people who write/read books). A lot of money goes into that: Does a company want to pay one cent per user for information on nine thousand users, to have more effective ads, or do they want to pay 30,000 dollars for an ad company to make them an ad that could be missing out on some crucial element or hint?


That sounds paranoid, but I'm only taking shots in the dark. We know Facebook is doing this, we just don't know 100% what they're aiming for or what they're collecting. More money goes into this than you'd suspect.


The one thing I do differently is I use the mobile app to read. I just hate sitting at my machine and will always take a phone or tablet to read things on Wattpad or using Safari iOS. I'm pretty aware that means data is being gathered on me too doing this, but atl east I don't get those weird alerts :(


Yeah - facebook's share/like system supposedly gathers info when embedded into other non-facebook pages. Or so goes the rumor..


It's modern irony: Facebook is the fastest way to promote your work, but it's the fastest way to alienate your fanbase.


btw: now that it's done, if someone wants to give a final review I'd appreciate it. I can take the feedback and use it for the novel.