How to use Wattpad as an author
Last week I noticed something was wrong with my mailbox: it was way too quiet. I could literally hear crickets whenever I opened my email. Turned out there was a small error which inhibited email actually landing into my lap.
There was one question waiting for me that I was dying to answer: is Wattpad worth it as an author?
For people who do not know Wattpad, Wattpad is an online community where authors can post their stories. Readers from all over the world can comment, like and share these stories with their friends and family.
Yes – you read that right. Wattpad is completely free. Yelp. Why would you post your story on Wattpad? Well, there are a few great reasons not to discount Wattpad as a great way to build an audience, but overall I would not put in too much of your precious time. This is why.
Wattpad a chapter-by-chapter network.
Wattpad is a chapter-by-chapter network. By this, I mean that most books are literally written on Wattpad. 90% of the stories are not plotted out and will literally be created on a chapter-a-day basis.
It might be interesting to follow a story from prologue to epilogue, just like you would a TV series, but the absence of a plot – and often a bigger picture, means story arcs are more often than not non-existent.
Teenagers are the main demographic of Wattpad.
Teenagers are the main demographic of Wattpad. 13 to 16-year-olds are the main users of this online writing network. Hey, that might sound great and amazing for Young Adult authors – but do keep in mind that these teenagers are mostly looking for Fanfiction. It might not surprise you that…
Fanfiction is the most popular genre on Wattpad.
Romances between a 14-year-old and Shaun Mendes? It might not be high on your to-read-list, but it sure is popular on Wattpad. The most popular stories on this network are fanfiction involving hot, famous guys – and rather young girls.
Stories are unedited.
Since these stories are written and offered for free, they are unedited. You will find a lot of spelling errors, slang, and weird word usage when reading through Wattpad books.
I don’t think there is anything wrong with that – given they are free, but when you are an author looking to become a best-seller, this might put your audience off.
Why you should use Wattpad as an author.
As an author – and especially a Young Adult author, Wattpad is not all bad. In fact, I would say that offering the first few chapters of your book on Wattpad might be a great marketing stunt.
In the book itself and in the description, you can put a link to your Amazon page for purchasing the complete book. When you are writing a series and are offering the first book in permafree – Wattpad might help you to get more downloads and thus more people hooked onto your series!