I had actual plans this morning. My short story ‘The Skin Shirt was ready to be unveiled to the public. Or at least a small group of my Facebook and Twitter contacts. So I logged in to Wattpad, made ready to publish, and pressed the button.
Nothing happened. Repeatedly. I could not publish that story. And so, I decided to unpublish some of my old Wattpad stories. I pressed the unpublish button. More nothing happened.
What I did not do was delete my whole Wattpad account to get my stories down. But it’s frustrating. I actually thought Wattpad would be a great way to get some opinions on some of my writing before I self-published it.
But if it isn’t functioning regularly, if I can’t control whether my stories remain available to the public there, what good is it?
Meanwhile I still have the problem of my short story. The picture above is the cover I hastily designed for it on Wattpad. I had planned to get some eyes on the story before I published the ebook version on Smashwords. But Wattpad doesn’t seem to work for that. And I wasted time writing a description of the story on Wattpad that didn’t register. I know, I should have cut-and-pasted the story description somewhere safe. Or written it in advance.
What I wanted out of having my story read was not getting a professional critique. Or even whatever it is that other writers’ beta readers do.
I wanted to know that some human beings (or intelligent alien life forms) had actually read the story. If they felt so inclined to ask a question about it or make a statement (‘That story is peculiar.’ or ‘What medication were you on when you wrote it.’ or ‘It made my eyes bleed.’) that would be good, too.
I’m going to go ahead and work on preparing the story for ebook publication soon. I will be sharing the details about it on my Facebook author page and here on my blog. I hope at least some people will be interested it the story.
Writers: what do you do to find beta readers or just some one who will read your story and maybe react to it? Readers: have you ever been a beta reader/First reader for some writer’s unpublished story? How did that work out?