AN's... love em? Hate em?

I’m going through that editing grind once again… and I started thinking about author’s notes tagged on the end of the chapters.
On one hand, I always enjoy hearing from the authors. On the other, it can be obnoxious and a bit unprofessional feeling.

What do you guys think? Is there anything you absolutely hate seeing in AN’s, or enjoy? Would you rather have them or not? Thanks :grin:

I like authors notes when they feel like the author isn’t forcing them. It gives me a tangible reason to comment somtimes when I can’t think of anything to say.


I think it really depends on how they’re handled. They can be quite engaging, and sometimes, I’m downright tickled if I feel like I’m being asked for help. Although again, that can really depend on how it’s done. I’m not sure I could make a list of DOs. But here are a few things that I would think are DONTs:

ANs in the middle of a chapter
ANs fishing for compliments (if you have doubts, maybe phrase them as a question?)
ANs holding your story hostage for votes
ANs disparaging your story (“I haven’t edited this, but whatever”)
ANs that have nothing to do with the story


Noted! Yeah, I enjoy being able to comment on an author’s note as well

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I only like them at the end of the latest chapter. Otherwise, it takes me out of the book.


solemnly swears I will never :joy:

Good thoughts though, thank you!

Would you edit out the old ones as you update then?

Yeah, I do. I don’t usually leave A/Ns, but the ones I did have I deleted. I guess it’s personal preference.

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I like that idea though! The old notes kind of lose importance anyway

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Exactly. I actually had someone who thought there were no more chapters because the old A/N said I was going to update on Monday :sweat_smile:

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Hahaha, they didn’t like, see the giant orange button on the bottom? :joy:

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:joy: Apparently not

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I am going to have to edit my ANs. xD That’s six years worth of chapters. Gah. xD


I like Author’s Notes when I’m in the process of writing a book, because I can ask for feedback or let people know when the next chapter is coming.

After the book is done, though, I go back and try to get rid of most of them. That said, I’ll keep a few that I feel are the most interesting (like maybe a fun fact about my writing process for that chapter).

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Unless some warnings need to be done at the beginning of a chapter, I prefer them at the end. As for me… I usually only keep one at the last chapter that was updated and delete the previous author’s notes. I try to keep them short because I never read long ones.

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I don’t really mind author’s notes as long as they aren’t intrusive. I’ve read stories/books, both here and on other sites where the author note is an entire chapter by itself. I understand that life happens and sometimes you just have to take a break, but adding an entire chapter seems a bit much. Maybe edit the last chapter uploaded to include an author’s note at the bottom explaining the break?

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I think it depends how it is done, and a few rules… In my opinion are:

  1. Author’s notes should be at the top or bottom of a chapter, never in the middle.
  2. The note should have some purpose, it shouldn’t be just an IM SORRY I COULDNT UPDATE FORGIVE ME. Or a HERE IS MY LIFE STORY, those can both be put up on your message board. I feel like they should be used to relay things relating to the book, or major events that the reader may want/need to know about; ex. surgery.
  3. They shouldn’t be too long…
  4. Abide by basic WP etiquette :slight_smile:

Some good uses can be:

  1. Engaging with the reader by asking questions
  2. Notify them of some change; ex. updating schedule, editing, chapters being taken down
  3. Major life changes that the author is comfortable with sharing
  4. Dedications can be okay or thank yous

I find author notes fine as long as they’re not extremely long and not full of unnecessary random stuff like “I just got out of school, what are you up to for summer?” If the author note contains anything random, then yeah, I’m not a fan. Random stuff should be put in the forums (that’s what the Cafe is for). Important things that are relevant to you as an author, profile, or stories should go on the message board.

Author notes (on every or every other chapter) should be kept short, sweet, and to the point. If you have an announcement like a change in schedules, slower updates, a hiatus, or a revised section of the beginning is up (or something of that sort) is a good for an author note. The message board is fine, but there are readers who don’t check out profiles, so it’s good to spread the news. Otherwise, author notes should only be meant for specific questions (like “What did you think about this scene?”) to get readers engaged more and also a reminder to vote, comment, add the story to a reading list and so on since there are readers who forget to do these things.

Personally, I do two author notes that are put into separate chapters. The first author note (at the beginning) is my way to introduce the story. I tend to explain the main inspirations, what you can expect from the book, and more. I also use the chapter for extra things. For example, in my story In the Dark, the author note has an extended summary, a trailer, and photos of the covers put on books, a Kindle, and a phone.

The one I do at the end is my way to close the story. I explain what I had in mind for goals (word count, etc.), questions I have for readers, and other things I may add.


I’ve actually done this, but instead of making them at the bottom of a chapter, I put them in a new part, which I moved to an appendix as I added new chapters.

This way, people can choose to engage in your thinking behind the chapter, or they can remain engrossed in your story as is their preference.

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I don’t mind them. I prefer them at the end of the chapter just like everyone else.

I like to read about the author’s life, or at least the parts that they want to share with us. I know for a fact that most people on here aren’t writing full time (yet), so I want to be able to relate to them in some way.

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