Monday, July 16, 2018

A True Story of Writing Serial Fiction

by Dan Bonser (writer), Keota, OK, November 29, 2012

My blog has opened up many opportunities for my, in a writing sense. One of the major opportunities has been writing a serial fiction fantasy story.

I never thought, when I started writing a blog that I would attempt to do something like write short stories and put on there. I always figured I'd just sit back and write essays and keep it simple, but then I wanted the blog to evolve into something truly fun.

I still remember the thought process behind it all. I'm writing a fantasy novel, and wanted a sort of break from the characters. So I remembered a certain character I created named El'Mindeeya Do'Katal. She was created for a video game, and as I played her, I started writing short stories and developing a personality and back story. The Emerald Bard became a huge hit in the small community I was in.

Deeya, as her friends called her, took on a life of her own, and though I enjoy long form, novel style writing, her story kept growing through short stories and forum posts and online play. Yet, when I walked away from the game, I wondered if I was walking away from this amazingly well developed character.

I looked at the blog, and the format I was doing, and decided to run an experiment, I stepped back and started writing a serial short story on Saturdays. To my amazement, it was instantly received well. So it became a weekly ongoing series.

The story is still evolving, but I decided the best format was to keep it in separate short stories that happen over a series of posts. As of this writing its 3 short stories, with a total of 17 posts. I try to write it where one has a lead in to the other, BUT each story is pretty much self contained so anyone can pick up and starting reading at the beginning of a story and not be lost.

Anyways, as I got into this, I started searching around, and found communities just for this concept. I knew what I was doing couldn't be original, as I was inspired by TV shows, or the old movie serials they used to do. Either way, I found out the genre is trying to go by the name "Serial Webfiction" and there are some great examples out there of the genre.

In the end, I've been blown away, because the series brings repeat viewers back to continue the story, and people really enjoy the characters. I also find it a very liberating experience, because I get to see people's reactions as the story is written, and can change future things in the story using feedback and comments. It's a wonderfully interactive experience.

On top of that, I now know that when I do publish the fantasy book, I have a home base to promote the book, already have a readership, and the book will help promote the blog. All this for just a simple experiment, and because I didn't want that character to die.

All in all, its been a very successful experiment, and made me more excited to write than I have ever been. I look forward to the next story, and seeing where the character goes, and how well her stories will be received in the future. There's nothing like having a justification for your writing, and knowing you are working in the right direction!

About the Writer

Dan Bonser is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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