A few days ago, in my excitement for reaching #2 under the Wattpad Chicklit category usually occupied by writers I believe to be younger than me (because, after all, I am NO spring chicken), I posted an announcement stating that fact – my story reaching #2 and thanking everyone who got the story there. A day or two later, I came across a poem about why such “ratings” should even matter, and that because it didn’t, this particular writer whom I follow would continue writing as he always did with no regard for votes or ratings.
Whether or not the poem was directed at people like me who dared clutter their timeline with such notifications (the poem’s since been taken it down, I think), it rankled. I felt bad for a story I am working so hard on to reach #2, or for even ranking at all. I even wrote passive aggressive poetry in response and ended up deleting my whole book of poems from Wattpad because my responses became just that – passive aggressive, and thus taking me away from the actual writing of said book whose rankings on a free writing site apparently annoyed others.
What happened to celebrating the act of being read?
My stories may never get to #1, or get 2 billion reads on Wattpad, nor even sell more than 10 copies on Amazon or Smashwords, even when offered for free, but #2 felt like an accomplishment in that my story actually mattered to some who found themselves rooting for my characters, and who made an effort to continue reading, voting and even a harder to effort to many, leave a comment.
So I will take the risk of cluttering your WP reader view by saying I’m proud that my little NaNoWriMo novel that begun as a short story challenge here on WordPress, now has gotten 100K views in less than 60 days. It’s no 2 billion reads or 10 real-time sales – and may never even sell a copy once I take the plunge to query it to publishers because well, I am just a self-pubbed author after all with a dream – but it’s 100K that I didn’t have when I started posting the first chapters almost two months ago. And that to me, is a feel-good present for this holiday season filled with too much angst over whether I’m providing my 5-year old with the perfect Christmas – especially when the tree is not yet up.
So for this milestone – just 100K reads – I’m celebrating. And thanking those readers who bothered to give it one read at a time. Whoever you are, I love you all, in a loving a stranger kind of way.
And to everyone who’ve read this far, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! And to those who don’t celebrate Christmas, Happy Holidays!