The Benefits of Online Writing Communities

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Did you know that Stephen King’s cult classic ‘Carrie’ was rejected by 30 publishers? How about that ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’ was turned down 12 times before a publisher found J.K. Rowing’s work in the middle of the slush pile? Every day hundreds of amazing stories go unread because manuscripts are overlooked by agents and publishers.

We want this to stop.

So, if traditional publishing doesn’t feel right for you, or hasn’t gone the way you planned, it might be time to start hunting for an alternative.

Using Inkitt as the example, let’s take a look at some of the benefits you gain from joining an online writing community. It just might be the solution that you’re searching for!

1 Get Feedback

If you’re stuck on a particular part of your manuscript, and think that another pair of eyes might help, the Inkitt Community has beta-readers, reviewers, and editors who are ready and willing to help you clean up your draft. Readers can also post reviews directly on your story, helping to get you instant feedback and reader response. These suggestions, critiques, and encouraging notes can make a big difference and help writers greatly improve their work over time.

2 Get Support

Inkitt also offers support to its growing list of aspiring authors. Not only do writers have Inkitt’s entire team behind them, but we have also enlisted the help of other publishing pros, savvy social media consultants, and successful authors to answer all your burning questions. Past partnerships include authors like Maria V. Snyder, Tina Gayle, and Gregg Hurwitz.

3 Get Published

Free writing contests are regularly hosted on Inkitt which promise a publishing deal as the main prize. In fact, that is how Erin Swan’s novel Bright Star was picked up for publication by Tor! Same goes for Lauren L. Garcia’s ‘Catalyst Moon: Incursion’ which won the Dreamlands Contest. It was published by Inkitt’s own imprint earlier this summer and is currently available for purchase on Amazon. ‘Just Juliet’ and ‘I Was A Bitch’ are also contest winner and are scheduled for release at the end of this month.

But what about first rights?

This is a questions that we get asked time and time again, and believe us, we understand where you concern is coming from, but it’s actually not true that posting writing online equates to being published. This idea is something that old-school publishing houses like to use to scare budding writers. There are plenty of examples of books that have been “published” online before they were picked up by big publishing houses. Nowadays, it can even be a benefit! Some publishers take more interest in works that have previously been online because they have already established a fanbase.

Harpercollins even addressed the issue when the online writing platform Authonomy was up and running. You can see that they share the same opinion:

We really see no particular reason why a manuscript that’s been showcased online should lose any of its value to an interested publisher…a writer with a proven readership is often more valuable to a publisher, not less. Book companies now regularly snap up volumes from high profile bloggers and promising self-publishers with existing readerships. It’s a good thing to prove that you’ve the enthusiasm and the skills to help make your project a success.”

(source: http://accrispin.blogspot.de/2008/09/victoria-strauss-authonomy-slushkiller.html)

So what do you think?

There are many new alternatives to traditional publishing popping up, and not all of them are safe places to share your work, but as long as you do your research and find the community that is right for you, you and your novel could make it all the way to the top of bestseller list.

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Want more information? Read about our publishing approach here or send me an email at lauren@inkitt.com.

Do you have a topic you would like us to cover? Let us know about your suggestion. 

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