Sunday, March 30, 2014
To Be Continued...
Lately I've seen a more and more eserials available to readers. For those of you who don't know, eserials are when full novels are broken up into three to six bite-sized chunks and sold separately. Each segment can be between twenty and one hundred pages. Sonetimes these segments are then put together in a set (translate: entire book) and other times they aren't.
Personally, I have a love-hate relationship with eserials. On the one hand, I think that they are a great way for a reader to try out a new author's writing at a lower price. Quite often the first installment of these eserials are free, which enables readers to try a book at no cost to them. I love this concept, and as a reader, have taken advantage of buying only a portion of a book. Sometimes the writing doesn't entice me enough to buy future installments, sometimes it does. Most of the time, if the first installment grabs me, I go on to buy the entire book.
I also love eserials because they are less daunting. When reading, it's easier for me to dread fifty pages in one sitting than three hundred. My reading time is limited to waiting for the kids in the school parking lot, or sitting in a doctor's waiting room. It isn't often that I get a large chunk of time to devote to a book.
On the other hand, if the writing entices me, then I want to read more NOW. Often these eserials are published days/weeks/months apart, and as a reader it can be frustrating to have to wait for the next installment. Also, if a reader ends up buying all of the installments separately, sometmes they can end up spending more money than if they just bought the entire book. People with limited book-buying budgets need to be careful so that they don't end up spending more money than they intended.
In early 2015, I will have my own experiemnt with eserials. St. Martin's Press will be publishing my book, AT HIS SERVICE, in four installments, then later as a full novel. The story itself is an erotic melodrama, which I think is great for this format. As a writer, it was easier for me to write the large, four-hundred page novel in shorter installments. I had a greater sense of accomplishment each time I finished a new section of the story. I think that the lower priced installments are also a great way to entice new readers who don't know my writing and might otherwise bypass the book. The installments themselves will come out close together and will be inexpensive enough so when bought separately, they will be about the same price as buying the book in its entirety. I'm interested to see how it will go over, and if people will enjoy reading the story in installments.
How about you? Do you read eserials? Would you ever consider reading an eserial? Tell me about it in the comments section. I'd love to hear from you!
Note: I'm part of an amazing project called Invitation to Eden. The series consists of twenty seven authors writing stories set in the same world. My installment comes out in May, but you can read more about this series and get the FREE PREQUELhere.