A Literary Agent's View on Wattpad & Traditional Publishing



Very serious writer on Twitter - secretly just there for the cute animals.


First Rights is an issue with magazines rather than novels.

And First Rights is like virginity. Once you lose it, you can’t get it back.


I hate Twitter. The dictionary should add another definition to the word “bully” — Twitter.


That’s too bad!

I’ve had a good experience so far, but then again, what you experience depends on who you make contact with on there.


Isn’t there some stat that only about 10% of your readership will usually engage with you? (AKA, like, comment, etc.) I wonder what the average is for the proportion of people that follow you vs. the number of people that would buy a book.

If a debut novel is generally considered a flop if it doesn’t sell a couple thousand copies, and publishers consider an author with 100k+ followers a safe bet, then the figure probably averages around 1%.

But that’s just a guess.


Thanks for asking! I was the one who started the discussion over on Tapas :blush:


Some stories will have high reads, votes and comments but not all follow the author - mine anyway. The opposite also applies - there are accounts with 10k+ followers and low reads on its stories.

Then there are stories with highish reads because they’ve been promoted incessantly - but mighn’t get the same elsewhere unless they get the same high level of ‘handholding’.

I suppose all of this is taken into consideration - and saying ‘It’s on Wattpad’ is a good excuse as any to give if they’re turning you down.


I’m not talking about personal experience. I don’t use Twitter. I’m talking about all the attack tweets.

Celebrity A get’s abused on Twitter because of something. Celebrity A apologizes. Now the next wave of abusive tweets come because of the apology.

It’s like no matter what someone does or says, they get bullied on Twitter. Some comedian just got beat up on Twitter because he threw his kid a Cowboys and Indians birthday party.

The same parents who complain about kids being bullied and committing suicide are just as bad as the bullies they’re complaining about. And it seems to be happening on Twitter.

End rant.


I thought I recognized you from Wattpad! No problem :slight_smile: I’ve been wondering about it too.


I’d agree with that. Which was also why I was so hesitant about joining twitter.

Luckily it’s pretty easy to filter exactly what you see on there, so you can make it what you want. And I haven’t had any bad experiences so far - but I stay to strictly tweeting about art and writing (like methods, processes, quotes, motivational stuff etc.)

That’s pretty non-controversial.

Wattpad or Traditional Publishing. Both?

I don’t think Wattpad is a really good platform to grow your readership (subscribers) anyways. Same with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Snapchat.

In the end, you may have high numbers, but how many actually subscribe or even follow you?

I’ve been on Twitter since 2009. I have had a lot of highs and lows in terms of followers. But only 3 or 4 actually follow me. The rest are dead accounts, bots, or spammers. The same for Facebook, the same for Wattpad, the same for every site I’ve been on.

Unless you have a lot of success in growing your base organically, you’re not going to be getting that much mileage out of social networking if you just keep paying attention to the number of followers and subscribers you have listed.



I just use all the filter options and don’t get into drama.

It’s sort of the same with booktubers (book youtubers)


I see your concern, but it’s a bit short sighted.

Some people follow you but never read your books. Some people read all your books but never follow you for whatever reason, and there are people in the grey (they follow you because of one story etc.)

You can build a readership. Your numbers aren’t an absolute way of gauging how interactive the readers/followers are, but they’re still a way to loosely estimate.


I actually just concentrate on reading other stories, writing sporadically and also, of course, doing my ambassador stuff.

I don’t bother much with building up the ‘platform.’ My main forays into other social media are to keep up to date with news and stuff. (Brexit, Christmas shopping and the weather being my main priorities at the moment)


I knew the mixed opinions on Wattpad, and I figured it was mostly the same for Tapas, but it was the tipping / ad revenue that concerned me the most with the latter.

I had a bit of a freak out the other day trying to figure out what to do (Querying Serialized Draft & Wattpad Trad Pubbed Books, posted the same day I posted on Tapas).

So what I’m doing is 1 project online to query, and 1 project to myself to queue.


I agree so much with this. The sad thing is a lot of the attackers are often the ‘Blue Badge’ brigade and I’ve seen more than one of them claiming their opinions matter more because of their follower count or ‘blue badge.’

Even an innocent tweet can be ambushed and used as an excuse for a row.


How is it short-sighted? Do you see anyone from Wattpad talking to me on a daily basis here in my IMs? Or how about Twitter? Unless I’m having a pissing match with a Trump supporter, I’m not having any meaningful discussions with any of my 613 followers for the past 10 years.

In fact, I can’t recall the last time I spoke with anyone on my followers list since I signed up. Same with Wattpad. Same with Quotev.

Or any other site. The way to being engaged with your readers is by having open lines of communication that works both ways–not on a one way street.

If you liked something of mine, tell me. Don’t remain silent. If you want to get to know me better (which is a rarity online these days since everyone has pretty much written me off as a crank author), don’t sit there in silence and expect me to know what’s going on.

The thing about successful writers is that they have an engaged fan base. People who really find what they do to be worthwhile. Most of the time we spend online as writers on various writing sites isn’t to converse with each other.

It’s to suck up as many reads or comments as we possibly can for our writing. “Farming” if you will. But we’re not here to “socialize”. And that’s part of the problem we’ve all faced since we started down this road.

We want to be well read, but at the same time, our readers do not want to return the favor by simply remaining engaged with the author. So all these reads and comments we get are completely at random, but they do virtually nothing for the lines of communication.

And many of us join up on various writer accounts for the book–rather than meeting the author. And we rarely speak to them on a regular basis.

So all these “followers” we rack up in a short amount of time is nothing short of depressing. Because you’re not going to be engaging with them at all. And they won’t be returning the favor either.

It just doesn’t tell us what we really need to know. And as my problems suggest, a lack of communication and understanding has been hindering my ability to reach out to people who so far have remained unable or unwilling to listen.

And therein lies my frustrations as both a writer and as an author.


I disagree with that. I definitely spend a lot of time on the internet talking with fellow authors. And I don’t think I have many readers following me on Twitter - the vast majority of them are fellow writers.

I’ve had a completely different experience here too. My readers are super active and I have lengthy conversations with them in my comment section. Some have even turned into friends because they PMd me or found me here on the threads and we’ve formed a friendship. I think that’s very subjective.

I reach out to everyone who follow me on Wattpad. I post a little thank you note on their wall - some reply, some don’t. Some turn into loud readers because of this, share their thoughts on my works and engage in conversations with me. So I’d say, that’s something that works in terms of getting people talking.


I regularly talk to my readers and twitter followers. I’ve also made good writer friends on twitter.

You have to reach out, people aren’t just going to line up for an opportunity to talk and engage with you.

If you’re not making the effort to engage with them… Welp.

I just talked to some of my readers less than an hour ago.

But readers do tell writers when they like their work…

I’m not sure I really understand this. I understand the term of farming reads I think (As in, generating artificial reads from book clubs and read for read deals), but a lot of people have organic reads, and I personally feel it’s easy to spot a writer with manufactured numbers, and they also never get that far with what they do. (We’re talking 100K+ reads)

All in all, I’m not sure how this then ties to your point of followers and read numbers not correlating with enaged readers.


I’ve never done that. Never even thought to do that. I guess once an introvert, always an introvert. :no_mouth: