Sunday, December 14, 2014

5 reasons readers and writers should be on #Wattpad


Wattpad is going to be the salvation of literature. What makes me say that? As of this moment, there are almost 40 million people spending 9 billion minutes per month reading the 75 million stories on Wattpad. Sounds good, doesn't it. What reader or writer doesn't like to hear about that kind of en masse participation in reading and writing, especially given the high percentage of younger people on the site. The next time some old fart says that no one reads anymore, tell him about Wattpad; the numbers are irrefutable, and they are growing, by leaps and bounds, on a daily basis.

So, here they are, the five reasons readers and writers should be on Wattpad:

5) In this day and age, writers need to work harder than ever to find an audience. What better place to look than a website that has 75 million readers looking for good writing?

4) Readers have always known that the best way to find a good book has always been word of mouth, and that's what drives Wattpad, word of (social media) mouth. My serialized novel (The Intern) was doing pretty well, about 5,000 reads, when a group of readers enthusiastic about the book started spreading the word, and I picked up 10,000 reads in a few weeks. That's word of mouth, social media style. One of my readers even made a cool cover for my book:


3) It's free. Now, I know that many writers will consider this a big issue (Who is going to buy my book when they can choose from 75 million stories for free?) but I don't agree with them. The biggest problem facing writers is a public that doesn't read; anything that gets people reading is a big bonus for writers. This is especially true when you consider that the large majority of Wattpadders are teenagers, who might otherwise never have gotten into reading. 

2) One click and the reader or writer can find out what's hot. (There is, in fact, a What's Hot tab on the Home Page.) As a writer, I started on Wattpad because I was curious about what is being written there. I had a suspicion that, given the social media nature of the site, young adult and paranormal fiction were the mainstays of the site. And I was right--there is a first time for everything--but I was pleasantly surprised to find every other genre of fiction as well. If you read, Wattpad has your genre of choice. If you write, there are millions of readers who are looking for your genre.

1) The top reason you should be on Wattpad? It's simple, really. You should be on Wattpad because that's where The Intern is. The Intern is the serialized novel I am writing on Wattpad, based loosely on my own internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Syracuse, NY (way back in the day) as well all the stories I have collected from interns the world over, shared in the dusty call rooms of a hundred faceless hospitals. It's raw, it's visceral, and it's real. Give it a look. The Intern. (For those of you fifty-thousand or so Intern fans, I am currently rewriting The Intern as a full-length novel. I hope to have it ready to shop late fall. Thanks again for all your support.)
 

Peter Hogenkamp is a physician and author living in Rutland, Vermont. Peter's writing credits include ABSOLUTION, the first book of The Jesuit thriller series; THE LAZARUS MANUSCRIPT, a stand-alone medical thriller; and The Intern, a serialized novel based loosely on Peter's internship, published bi-weekly on #Wattpad. Peter can be found on his Author Website as well as his personal blog, PeterHogenkampWrites, where he writes about most anything. Peter is the founder and editor of Prose&Cons; a frequent contributor and reviewer at ReadWave; the founder and moderator of groups on Facebook (The Library), Google+ (Fiction Writers Anonymous); and a Beta-reader at StoryShelter. Peter also created and judges a #bestfirstparagraph contest for #NaNoWriMo; entries may be submitted 12/1/14 - 12/31/14 on the Fiction Writers Anonymous feed. Peter tweets--against the wishes of his wife and four children--at @phogenkampvt and @theprosecons. He can be reached at peter@peterhogenkamp.com or through his literary agent (Liz Kracht of Kimberely Cameron & Associates) at liz@kimberleycameron.com.