Is it worth it?

Its been a few weeks since my novel has joined TWF and been in the top position, so a few thoughts are crossing my mind right now.


My novel is different from most of the others being hosted here as it's a chinese xianxia based fiction.


Looking at my site stats, I get around 100-200 views from TWF daily, which is negligible compared to my total daily views from other sources.

So, this has me thinking... what does this community think of xianxia stories? Is it worth it for me to continue having my story here, and asking my readers to vote?


Most of the people that vote for my story are my already existing readers, and obviously readers of xianxia fiction.


My main purpose to come here was to expose this community to the chinese xianxia writing, and see what they thought about it.


any thoughts on this matter?


The forums aren't really the place to ask this. All you'll get are replies from other serial writers, and everyone has a vested interest.


That said, here's my two cents: :-)


It sounds like what's happened is you've leveraged your existing audience to increase your visibility at WFG. That's a good first step, but if that's so, being at the top position is only a first step. If what you're doing is trying to introduce a new form of fiction/genre to an audience that isn't used to it and may come here specifically for something else, then it's going to take a while. From that perspective, drawing 100-200 readers right off seems like a solid beginning... but seducing a new audience takes time.


Haha, yeah. I really don't know what you want from us. "GTFO" or "Please stay, senpai" seem to be the obvious ways to answer this.


How about this: I don't care. If you want to stay on Top Web Fiction, do so. If you think it's not worth it... leave?


You do you.


As for xianxia in general, it's not really my thing. Or maybe I just haven't found the write xianxia serial. I'm glad they exist because I read Journey to the West years ago, and it's been really fun watching a bunch of web serialists play with those tropes. Very fun and unexpected in the way the Internet so often is.


EDIT: Haha, oh you wanted an answer like Ubersoft's, which I didn't see until after I posted. That's fair.


It's not really hurting you to stay, is it? It's not like you have to pay a membership fee :p


From my experience, with both the stuff I wrote seven years ago and the stuff I'm writing today, I don't get much interest from the WFG/TFW demographics (whatever they are). That's just the way things go. But then the demographics seven years ago were different to those today. They might be different tomorrow. Maybe your series will catch on and usher in a new era of xianxia serials, the same way Worm bolstered the popularity of the superhero genre. Maybe it won't (at least, not here), but then what do you lose by being on the list?


Which brings me on to the other thing about TWF: that it's encouraging (or one would hope) your fans to read other stories. And maybe 200 views is about average? Do you know what the other series get from being on the list? Or are you just assuming that you should be getting more?


@melonmonkey, other serial writers' opinion is also what Im going for. Most of the people I know are translators of the chinese xianxia, and a new perspective might help.


The reason I asked this question is because right now, I actively try to get my readers on this site and to vote. I offered to release an extra chapter if it reaches the top rankings, and since I have already gotten that, I will be fulfilling my promise. What my concern is whether it's a good investment of my time to continue having my readers come here to vote, by posting about TWF at the end of my chapters, reminding them, etc.


Most readers dont bother doing extra stuff unless the writer/author asks them to. I got so many votes at the start because I specifically asked them to vote for me at the main chapter post on the frontpage of my site. I have stopped doing that this week, and only given link to the voting at the next blank page after the latest chapter. some read it, others dont.


Seeing as the votes recently refreshed, Im having doubts whether to continue asking for votes or just ignore it. Thats why i wanted to ask the opinions of the community on what they think of a xianxia story being hosted here


As I recently told Durrendal, the fics that are common on Royalroad (reincarnation, harem stories, Xianxia etc) aren't really a 'thing' on WFG. Before your post, I didn't even know what Xianxia is! We had a magical girl story a while back (Saga of Soul) and it doesn't look like it got very much attention. We also had some VR with End Online, but again, it only got a tiny handful of ratings from WFG regulars despite high rankings on TWF for many months.


As a side note - my superhero serial, which is quite popular on WFG, is only getting a small handful of views on RRL. I probably won't continue posting it after the end of the first 'book'. So maybe the two sites really do appeal to different kinds of readers.


No one can tell you whether you're going to start a new trend, and if Xianxia will replace superheroes as the popular genre. It could happen, but it's also possible that it never will. It's up to you to decide whether the extra effort is worth it.


To sort of go along with Chrys, my serial hasn't seen much success on RRL or r/lightnovels despite (at one point) being #3 on TWF for a few months. My erotica serial didn't have much success on TWF despite it having huge support on various porn and erotica sites. I don't think it's that WFG readers haven't been exposed to Xianxia before, it's just that people who want that sort of thing check out RRL, just like I think readers on RRL are *aware* of fantasy or superhero stories but don't seek them out there.


I don't think that anyone is doing things the "right" or "wrong" way, I just think different audiences want different things, and gravitate to different sites. In the end, the only person who can determine whether it's worth the work posting to a non-typical audience for your work is you. Will there be a return? Sure. Will that return be enough? No one can really tell you that, as it varies from person to person.


To add another thought - WFG lacks keywords to properly 'tag' stories like yours and make them searchable. I don't know how much of a difference search keywords make, but I do notice quite a bit of traffic from webfictionguide/superheroes, as in people who were specifically looking for that kind of thing. Likewise, RRL doesn't have a superheroes tag.


I get much more traffic from WFG than TWF these days. Sure, the two are connected, but I don't think every reader who browses WFG is aware TWF exists. So maybe search keywords really do matter.


I admit I've always wondered why there isn't more integration between WFG and TWF, since the two are linked, yet there's no indication of that on the WFG. Especially since WFG has a "popular" item on the menu!


Also, how does the whole "Featured Updates" affect clickthroughs? And what decides which series get "featured"?


@Dary, Im not sure how much traffic others get from TWF, but I'm saying that 100-200 daily views is low compared to the traffic I get from other sites like reddit, aho-updates, etc


I knew the audiences were different but I just wanted to give it a shot, and see how it would affect my novel. I recently got a lot of new readers from amazon who havent read xianxia before, and wanted to try TWF and see the reaction.


I guess I'll still keep the voting link at the side, but not going to bother addressing it on my main posts. Hopefully, a few stragglers will get into the xianxia genre lol


Those other sites might be a lot bigger than WFG, though. Unless we have solid figures on how many unique users this site, or TWF, gets, we can't say whether or not 200 hits is good or bad. It could be ten, twenty, fifty percent of TWF users, for all you know, and that's a rather good CTR!


My two cents as a pretty new serial writer who's also looked into the xianxia community a little bit:


I think it's really cool for different communities to help each other out and intermingle where possible, so I hope that's something that could come out of this sort of thing. When I first discovered WFG, I was really happy to see not only a well updated index of web serial fiction, but also a community of authors that is actively communicating with each other and helping each other out.


@Daman, I think exposing the webfic community to xianxia is a fine idea, and hopefully a cool route for people to discover another genre(s) that they're into. However, I think it would similarly be an excellent idea for the xianxia community to be exposed to more webfic as well, since cross-promotion is only ever a *good thing*.


I'm small fry, barely begun, so 200 hits sounds amazing to me. I don't really understand your reason for it not being "worth it", since I doubt it takes too much effort to tell people to go click this link. Unless you feel bad for hogging the top spot in lieu of other webfic authors? I could understand in that case.


Anyway, while you may retreat a little from TWF, I hope you stick around on WFG cause, personally, I like that there are all sorts of authors on here, not restricted to one genre or community. And we're all just people writing stuff in the end, so we should all get along :)


How old are you, Daman? I ask because everything you post seems to be remarkably juvenile. You're asking people if you think it's worth your time to put effort into topping the charts on TWF? How could anyone here possibly answer that question?


We don't know your stats. We don't know how much work you're putting into getting those votes. We don't know how much time that takes. We don't know what reader complaints you get because of it. We don't know how you could be spending that time, wordcount, and other resources on other sites to get views in potentially greater numbers than you'll get here.


We literally know nothing about you or your novel. So either you made this post in ignorance, or it's a thinly veiled brag. I'm going to take it as the former, since you don't seem the type for the latter, but it calls your character into question.


Keep in mind that the first thing I read from you wasn't your serial, it was your forum post calling out members of this forum for their actions on another forum. While I have no idea if you're actually being harassed on other forums, I do know that the reasonable response it to take it up over there.


I want to note that none of what you've done is inherently offensive or against the rules in any way. That's not what I'm saying. What I'm trying to indicate is that you're rubbing me and nameless others the wrong way when you do things like this. You want to go? Fine. You want to wave your fanbase dick around at the top of TWF for the rest of existence? Also fine. Just know that you're not earning friends with things like this.


@melonmonkey, you question my age and then you start dissing me with insults lol. Read my above posts carefully, I was asking about the opinions of this community on xianxia stories and their take on it, and whether I should continue investing my time to promote it on this site.


In no way did I say that I will be leaving the site, I said whether it was worth investing my time to continue getting my readers to vote here. Read the shit carefully before you go around insulting others.


I merely asked for the what people thought about xianxia stories on the site and thats it. Im not "dicking around my fanbase here", the only reason I asked them to vote was for other people to see my novel. I thought that was the purpose of this whole site?


Hi Daman,


I'm Wildbow, I'm a fairly successful author who got his start here on WFG, and am enmeshed in the community enough that, in the 4 hours since you started this thread, I've seen two conversations referencing this discussion. TDE is getting attention by virtue of taking the top spot on TWF, and people have been talking about it in the background for the last week or so - so when you posted your thoughts about WFG/TWF, people were interested enough to discuss this very thread.


With that in mind, I would urge you to be very careful with what you're saying. People may be paying more attention than is immediately visible by way of stats, and when you belittle a community like ours and complain that 100-200 views is negligible when there are a number of authors here who would be thrilled to gain even half of that visibility, then people talk about it and word spreads.


I've got one chat channel atm, on an IRC channel where people discuss my work, and in the off-hours when people don't have a Twig chapter to read, one person has been reading your work and giving commentary, while twenty others pay varying degrees of attention. When you posted this thread, attitudes immediately soured. Some of that will be reader bitterness that Twig is no longer #1, but some of it is genuine affront at the attitude you're conveying. If your aim is to be an ambassador of the xianxia genre, then this would not be the optimal way to go about it. You're poisoning your own well.


My personal perspective is that one needs to keep as many doors open as possible. If the work and time it takes to make a post and point viewers over here isn't worth the 100 views, then stop. If you think those 100-200 views and the growth it might offer is worth it, then keep going. It's worth noting that the clickthroughs will decline as novelty wears off, but also that one new reader is potentially someone who recommends you to five or ten or a thousand others. I'm making a living off of my writing, and WFG was what gave me my start and got my foot in the door... keeping doors open got me this far. Only you can make the cost/benefit analysis for your particular situation, so I'll echo Billy in scratching my head and wondering why you're posting this.


Continuing to maintain a presence on TWF is, for me, more than just the views it gives me. When talking to people who could do something with my work, I can say that X work was #1 on TWF for Y straight months, and there's a value to that. I can also say that insofar as some readers might find their way to me by way of TWF, it's more important that they find their way to other stories. Why? Because this is a community and there is a baseline level of respect and interaction and support that happens here. It's up to you if you're game for that.


@Wildbrow, thank you for your response... its the most polite and informative one I've gotten from this community so far.


I was in no way complaining about the 100-200 views, I was using that to judge the interest in the book from TWF. Its a new audience, and people with different tastes. I have been having doubts about continuing to get votes here, as Im not sure whether this community is interested in a xianxia based story. That was the whole reason for this thread and asking for opinions.


Since the views were not a precise way to gauge the interest in the xianxia fiction, I decided to post a thread to get verbal feedback.


However, I was not aware that this question would incite so much anger...


I thought our posts before Wildbow's were polite and informative, too... I certainly was trying to help. :(


Maybe it's me and my poor English, but you made it sound like 'this community' wasn't very polite or informative prior to Wildbow's post. *insert tiny butterfly tears here*


Well, back to writing I guess.


@Daman, based on your last reply, I think you may be confusing two different communities here... There is a community of webfiction authors on WFG, and TWF is voted on by a community of readers (some of whom may be authors as well). While there is some crossover, it's two different sets of people who comment on the forums here and review each others work, and those who support and upvote serial fiction on TWF.


Last thing, cause I am in no way fit to comment on this stuff at all being a total newb: I think between authors, as Wildbow says above, "keeping doors open" is a very good policy indeed. This isn't a zero-sum game - we can all support each other and help readers find each others work. In whatever genre. TWF is just a tool. WFG is people.


@Chrysalis, sorry about that! You, ubersoft, Dary, Maddirose and David, have all been polite and helpful ^^ I guess the monkey melon guy's comment just soured my mood.


*hands Chrysalis a cookie as a peace offering*