I’m probably right when I say I’m one of the last few authors on JukePop that had a story started as a JukePop Draft and is now nearing completion as a JP regular. Now, for most of you who don’t know what that means, I’ll explain. JukePop, the serialized novel platform I’m writing on, has a thing called the JP Draft. It’s where stories with potential, but did not quite catch the eidtors’ eyes goes to for peer review from other authors in the community. If you get four endorsement from authors, your serial novel becomes a JP Serial, and is eligible for all the JP perks like being in the Top 30 list and all that. And 139: In Evening, is part of that group that jumped out of the draft bin.
So does that mean I’ve made it? Does it mean that as a writer, approved by my peers, I’m deemed ‘good’? Well, not really. Because of the 4 authors that endorsed my story, none of them are currently still writing on JukePop. Each of them have stopped after readership to their stories dwindled. In fact, I know of only one other author who, after his readership slowed down or dwindled, continued to bravely write his story, and that person is of course, Kevin A.M. Lewis, author of Metal Shadow.
For a lot of other author, whether it was their first or second book, the moment the +votes are lower than their expected ratio, they straight up give up. This is baffling to me, because 139: In Evening has a total of 75+votes at the time of this writing for a total of 38 Chapters. That’s barely two votes per chapter! And some of the ‘I give up’ stories, have hundreds of votes for half of my chapters! This is insane! 9 of the 11 stories I follow on JukePop have stopped posting. I don’t know if the authors ran out of time, or ran out of motivation to write, but that’s 9 stories that I will never know the ending to! And all these are from JP Regulars, people who were never even in the drafts section.
See, I have a theory for this. As authors, we love our work. We put a lot of effort into them, these stories that rattles around in our brain. So when each of our masterpieces are not automatically topping the charts, we get very, very upset. Then, we give up, for whatever reason. Now, this would not be that much of a problem, if it was not for the fact that by doing so, it causes some problem. And here’s the catch, the low +votes might not totally be the author’s fault.
If you look at 139: In Evening, it is not exactly the highest rated thriller on JukePop. But at the same time, when sorted by +Votes, it is surrounded by a bunch of other stories that, though discontinued or completed, are still around the first page. As far as I know, Dani Voelkel’s The Apple has not been updated for more than half a year. As an author, this is kind of a problem. If people click on The Apple and finds out that it’s been discontinued, they might assume my story is too. And for every completed work that makes it on the front page, they are going to tend to stay there and make it harder for the rest of the stories to reach the same page, let alone chance for a story that climbed out of the draft bin.
Sure, publishing platform like JukePop can add more features to help better sort out these three categories of work. Especially since they are a platform geared towards serialized authors that are constantly producing work. Works that are being serialized should come first, and completed stuff could be put under a different category, as do work on hiatus. Right now, the playing field is not levelled for serialization, as existing authors have a much more powerful say in their position, whether or not their stories are still in circulation.
You can, of course argue, that the more we update, the longer our stories will stay on the ‘recently updated’ tabs. But let’s face it. As humans, we are lazy, and we want to have the best things possible for the shortest amount of time and effort. We are of course, going to go for the highest voted tabs instead.
Of course, saying all these suggestion is easy, but making them a reality is quite a different story. And even if JP does include a better sorting system, it will not be in the near future. So, until all that is possible (if it’s possible), all authors should follow these simple steps.
1) Take a break when you don’t feel like continuing your story and see if you can get your muse back.
2) If you can’t and want to stop writing, update your reader via a new chapter or social media that you are discontinuing your work.
3) Give them time to digest. About a month will do.
4) Unpublish your work to remove the clutter.
5) Sit back, relax, and wait for the muse to come home.
And that’s it!
But really, my point is this. I am selfish and childish. Delete your stories so I can become more famous. Yeah!