When I originally looked into self-publishing my first novel, Summoned, I was directed to Wattpad as a place to feature an excerpt of my novel. Sadly, I didn’t heed this advice because using Wattpad can be a great way to introduce your writing to millions of readers.
Wattpad claims to be the world’s largest community for discovering and sharing stories. On this website, users can post their stories or read one of the thousands of new stories posted every day. Wattpad’s dedicated readers spend over 2 billion minutes each month on the site. Readers can collect stories into reading lists, vote for their favorites and share and comment with friends and writers.
From a writer’s perspective, Wattpad allows you to connect and engage over 10 million readers worldwide. It can allow you to share your work, build a fan base and receive feedback on your stories.
And the best thing – the website is totally free.
To create an account, simply go to wattpad.com. Click the orange “Join Free” button at the top right corner of the screen. Follow the directions to set up your account. It takes only a few minutes to add your profile and link to Twitter or Facebook.
You can publish any story as long as it is a .txt file and not larger than 2MB in size. If you want, you can upload a chapter at a time. But remember you are giving this away for free so it is probably best to post just an excerpt or write something you intend as a self-promoting piece. Or since the first chapter or so is already free on Amazon, why not post it on Wattpad too? You can even post links for the readers to then buy your books after becoming ensnared by your prose.
I wrote my short story, The Search, with the intention of offering it for free. It is currently free on Smashwords, Barnes and Noble and the Kobo store. Only on Amazon do you have to pay for it. Since it is already free elsewhere, it made the perfect candidate for Wattpad. (You can check out The Search on Wattpad by clicking here.)
I added it last week to Wattpad. Within three days (with no promoting of it), I had 20 readers. Two days later I was up to 31 readers and this was with very little promotion. Since then I have sent out a few tweets and Facebook posts on it. People aren’t reading it in droves, but it is exposing my writing to more readers – ones that I hope will like my writing well enough to purchase my trilogy.
I think Wattpad can help authors find readers even if all you offer is what is already free on Amazon – the first 10-20% of your novel.