So, after mulling the pros and cons, trying to understand the value of publishing something online, I’ve decided to give it a go. Today marks the beginning of the Summer Writing Project, which is a collaboration between 1888 Center (a publisher) and Jukepop, an online story telling social network that allows writers to publish their stories in a serialized version online where readers can comment, critique, or just simply read along as the story develops. From June 1st-31st, the writing process/posting session is open in the Jukepop website. From July 1st-31st is the workshop sessions in which each story is looked over and 25 top stories are selected. Then, in August, one story out of all the others is selected as the winner and is published by 1888 Center as a stand alone novella. Oh yeah, this is all for novellas.
Now I was a little skeptical about this situation. I felt as though publishing something I’ve worked for a year or two on, or more, on the internet seems to devalue it in some ways. But this isn’t necessarily the case. Not if I enjoy writing it. Of course I’d love to send my novella to a publisher and have them pick it up and publish it through conventional channels. But the difficulties of the form doesn’t lend itself well to traditional publishers, or the avenues they work in. So, I ask myself, why not? It will be an interesting experience to put something up and see if it gets the backing it needs to survive. I don’t particularly like competitions when it comes to fiction. I much rather encourage others, build relationships and enjoy a community that benefits everyone. Symbiotic. And while this project might pit writers against each other, a little, I think it’s more important to remember that the whole thing is about having fun writing what you love and reaching SOME readers, rather than ALL the readers. If one person likes your piece, my piece, any piece enough to then check out what else that author has written, then it’s probably worthwhile. That’s how important fiction can be to people. And that’s why one reader should be more than enough for any author.