There are many platforms you could use to write and post your fanfictions, but Wattpad is one of the better ones. Wattpad has handy features and gives different kinds of opportunities to writers. The site also has a sense of community through the use of the forums, and through peer feedback (comments). There’s even a chance that Wattpad may publish your work. So, why choose Wattpad over other sites?
Wattpad has a plethora of opportunities for their user base. One of the more prominent ways they reach their users is through writing contests. They set guidelines for that particular contest, and leave the writer to create their interpretation of what inspires them.
One of the more recent contests was to create a 500-word short story about “a life-changing pivotal first,” for the show Looking For Alaska that was released on Hulu. The few requirements include a 500-word maximum and a basic theme; the writers had a lot to work with. The contest highlights the show, and the writer taking part in the contest. This allows the writers to gain recognition.
Typically these contests are based around movies/shows adapted from books to stick with a literary theme, but they can also be based around a movement, like the anti-bullying campaign.
Another great opportunity is the Watty Awards. An award show that the site hosts to highlight stories in all kinds of genres from non-fiction to fanfiction. The best part, one lucky winner gets published by Wattpad Books, and is available for all to purchase.
As seen from the quote headlining this article, the chance of getting to get published through Wattpad is very high. Take what happened to Anna Todd in 2013, “she sat down to type the first chapter of After on her phone…with 11 million copies sold after Wattpad brokered a mid-six-figure deal for Todd with Simon & Schuster.” After writing several chapters of her “erotic tale” she was approached by Wattpad and given a deal. The book and the original story on Wattpad has since gained billions of view and is even getting a movie.
Wattpad founder Allen Lau told Forbes, “We had built the audience for the writers, the platform for them to share their stories.” They clearly care very much about the platform and its audience as a whole. This makes the writers feel like Wattpad could be their new home for writing.
I would like to highlight two features in particular. The first is the community forums. The forums allow readers and writers alike to engage with each other, whether it’s bouncing off ideas or participating in community held writing contests to gain recognition. The forums are a good way to learn writing tips in addition to gaining an audience for your works.
The second feature is the ability to create cover photos for your stories. This makes stories more appealing to readers since they can see that you’ve made an effort to represent your story visually. A picture does say 1,000 words, after all. Much like the image to the left, the photo tells the audience the tone of the story, how it’s a serious fanfiction.
Overall, Wattpad is a very community oriented site with plenty of opportunities for writers to improve their craft. Especially for fanfiction writers, those are some of the most read stories on the platform.