Worm is done.

So, Worm is done. The last chapter is up, and comments are just starting to roll in as I type this sentence. I haven't been lynched.

Quite a journey. Where to even begin?

Numbers? 4 million total views with a high of 60k in one day, 11k unique viewers on my best day, 51,000 comments.

All in all, the story is about 1,650,000 words long. 26 or so conventional length novels, across 305 updates.

In terms of general accomplishments, I updated all 305 chapters on time, though there were Wordpress snafus that mucked things up, causing delays that totally weren't my fault. On days I said I'd update, I released updates.

Mess-ups? Oh, there were chapters that weren't so great with two that I scrapped - rewriting one and just tossing the other & erasing it from continuity. The penultimate chapter might have been rewritten entirely if I'd had the time. I had one point where my dog died, and I tried to write a chapter the next day and ended up scrapping it, but I didn't schedule it or promise a chapter that night anyways. There's one big story arc which I plan to rewrite entirely.

It's been a hell of a thing, but it's done.

Where to next? Editing. Oh... so much to edit.

Moving straight on to my next story, sampling chapters to my readers and then starting up the one with the best response (and best gut feeling for me) around the new year.

Possibly a kickstarter involved for getting Worm published, with a possible print run if I can get my audience (or another party) to fund it.

It's only been a short while since the story wrapped up, but I've received an offer to do a video game based off of the serial, and one offer for a deal from a company I'm still not sure I understand (I think it was like Big New World - the serial aggregater, but broader).

I started all this as an experiment, to train myself out of a bad writing habit and build up forward momentum, and here I am. Exhausted, proud, bewildered.

Congratulations, Wildbow. I wish you all the best moving forward. I am a teensy bit jealous and thinking about mailing you a box full of poop, though.

Dude, congratulations. Worm is a hell of an amazing accomplishment. I look forward to your next project.

Yeah well done, the last chapter tied things off perfectly and looks to be very well received.

I also feel envious of your statistics, but then the amount of work you've put into Worm is so huge you really deserve every view.

I bet its a relief to not have to try tie up plot threads and bring it to a close, starting something fresh must be a wonderful feeling.

Congratulations don't begin to cover the amazing achievement that is "Worm". Its sheer size is monumental, and it becomes all the more impressive when you factor in that every chapter is detailed and evocative. Each one will instill an emotion - some are exciting, others sad, scary, funny, thrilling. It was never boring, not even once. Creative powers, interesting characters, the story gives new meaning to the overused term "epic.". I have never been more impressed by a work of fiction - in some 2 years Wildbow has had the output of an entire career. It is a definitive work of webfiction and literature in its own right.

Despite my hiatus and lack of community involvement of late, I read every update of Worm eager for more. I'm not sad to see it end because the story is finished so well - I'm more proud, and satisfied. I have witnessed greatness and hope that I have learned something as a writer - because the effort and talent are inspiring.

Certainly inspiring G.S.Williams, there's been a whole host of serials spawned by fans. Mine included. I'm interested to see how some of them turn out and how long they last.

Congratulations. You've done a crap-load.

Congrats again Wildbow! It's an amazing achievement! Also, it makes me feel mega lazy (in an inspiring way!). Can't wait to read your next work. :)

I bet its a relief to not have to try tie up plot threads and bring it to a close, starting something fresh must be a wonderful feeling.

It's kind of like being on a high speed motor boat that's zipping along the water, there are some bumps, but you're mostly just coasting, and then there's a little bump, smooth sailing, and you realize the boat isn't under you, in a Wile E Coyote style 'oh no' moment before you hurtle, flipping head over heels into the water's surface.

I said I felt bewildered before. I do. So many of my writing days have been full days. Writing from nine or ten in the morning until midnight, editing until 2am, then 1-4 days of recuperation/doing other stuff (depending on whether I did a thurs update or not) before I repeat the process. That's a hell of a thing to have in your routine, and it got harder as I went along, because there was all of the continuity and stuff to pay attention to.

But that continuity and stuff is kind of a support as well. Moving on to not having that support is tricky.

Congrats Wildbow!

I think you mentioned you were setting up a mailing list? I really encourage this -- a lot of folks used to just "visiting" a site fall out of practice too easily when there are breaks. Or - are you setting up another writer blog they can follow between Worm and your next launch ?

Regarding the offer -- I would try to keep all publishing options open. I'm not too comfortable with some of the serial publishers still lingering around as many do not openly disclose their terms. (I think some are a little bit predatory as well.) However if it's 47 North (Amazon) I"d say give them a few minutes of your time. I think Worm is actually a really good fit and may be worth pitching.

Congrats, Wildbow. I thought it was a very fitting ending. I, for one, will be eagerly awaiting your next installment, whatever it may be. And I think you shouldn't worry too much about people crossing over and enjoying your next project. You've earner a lot of fans with Worm (rightfully so) and that kind of following doesn't just disappear.

Congratulations! I am inspired by your dedication to keep on trucking. I look forward to your next venture.

Worm is significantly longer than the longest dead tree published novel. I don't know whether it is the highest word count web serial - there are some that have been running for over 15 years (Footprints and About Schuyler Falls over on Epiguide). I think its greatest achievement was the sustained consistency of posting combined with the sheer amount written in the 2 1/2 year time frame, while maintaining a level of quality that inspired a cult following. Worm's other major contribution was to be the rising tide that floats all boats - equivalent to the influence of Tales of Mu in 2007-9 in terms of raising the profile of web fiction in general.

The iron will and dedication it took to achieve this, reminds me of a story about a bug girl who could never surrender or refrain from giving her all, no matter how daunting the odds...I just hope Wildbow's arm hasn't fallen off from all the typing.

Not to worry, I use both hands when typing, distribute the load.

It's really, really strange to see people talking about Worm in places. Like, I'll stumble across mentions on /r/fantasy in Reddit, or on subforums like Giant in the Playground or Rpg.Net. It's mostly been limited to 'nerdy' circles, not to be conveyed as a pejorative, but it's still kind of stunning when it happens. That I've inspired a ridiculous quantity of fanfiction and got people to start their own serials is very strange, as are the long arguments that spill forth when people bring up certain topics.

I still haven't made a complete mental transition from being the guy who, 3 years ago, couldn't get a work past 5 pages in length. There's a dissonance there. I want to be proud of what I've done, but at the same time, that doesn't jibe with my self-image. I've grown in other ways, which maybe accompanies finding a direction in life, that thing you really want to do, but I won't/can't get into that in too much depth on that front, as it's very personal.

I'm kind of wanting to make a transition to writing full time in the next 6-8 months, if circumstances allow, being able to focus more on the writing, get out of my current city (it's not a very warm place in social terms and I'm currently sharing a house when I'm definitely a more solitary type that would prefer to be on my own). So I'm kind of thinking I want to move somewhere more out of the way (with cheaper rent) and just make a big transition on that front. That, of course, hinges on what happens with the next story, donations, and any other costs that spring up.

Well, it's taken me nearly a year, but I'm going to seriously start reading Worm now that I have an idea of how large of an endeavor it will be. Hopefully it's not too addictive; my high school is poor, and instead of buying a single wifi router, they decided to donate money to Washington and Gifford, which I understand and would have done, if I had any money to donate (I live around an hour from Washington, IL and Gifford, IL, if you don't know what happened there this weekend, here's a link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/17/washington-illinois-torna_n_4292667.html ) and buy new computers when pretty much all of the students have at least a mediocre laptop (long, pointless story). In other words, me pulling it up on my iPad during study hall is a no-go, so I have to read it when I'm at my house.

I've been meaning to say congratulations since reading the last update. At the time though, I was too tired. The ending worked though. I'd say more, but since not everyone here has read Worm, I won't.

It's funny. You mentioned serials being started as a result of people reading your work... That is weird when it happens. A few people have started serials because of Legion, and there's been a small amount of Legion fanfiction. It is a kind of validation when people care enough about something you've done to want to add to it themselves, and Worm definitely deserves the affection. The universe feels very real even if it's not a place I'd choose to live. Visiting is just fine.

I look forward to the next story you write.

Wildbow, i gotta say, if worm was crap, if it was shitty ass mary sue ridden badly written CRAP, your update schedule and output would still have been an aweinspiring, impressive achievement.

The fact that it is such a wonderfully nuanced full figured story makes me hate you with a burning jealousy that no amount of rum can extinguish. Good job! keep it up with teh new stuff! (i need to go read those samples... )