Writers Anonymous
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Enzonia

My main story has 400 hits and 11 reviews, and it is around 25,000 words long (and getting bigger by the week!) and I was just wondering how normal this is, is mine average in the number it gets? is it low? (I've read stories the same length with almost 100 reviews) and what does yours get? Thank you!

6/12/2012 . Edited 6/12/2012 #1
DreamingDragon37

I was wondering what exactly hits are? I've never been able to figure it out :)

6/12/2012 #2
Enzonia

The number of non-unique visitors

6/12/2012 #3
DreamingDragon37

Non-unique?

6/12/2012 #4
Enzonia

It could be the same person. Like if I visited my story 20 times, it would record 20 hits, but only 1 visitor (visitor is unique visitors). If you visited it 5 times as well, it would record 25 hits and 2 visitors. If you reviewed it, I would be happy. :)

6/12/2012 #5
The Lauderdale

I'd love to answer this, but you should categorize your post first, per the Welcome thread. (Click on the gray cog at the lower right corner of your post, next to Reply, to find the Edit option.)

6/12/2012 . Edited 6/12/2012 #6
cathrl

By my numbers you'd be exactly normal. I get about one review to every 40 hits. (Except after the story's complete and has been up for a while. Then the reviews stop but the hits keep trickling in.)

Absolute numbers really depends on the fandom. Some stories in big, popular fandoms get more reviews than my fandom has worldwide members.

Edit: And yes, please categorise your post.

6/12/2012 . Edited 6/12/2012 #7
Enzonia

Done! Sorry :(

6/12/2012 #8
The Lauderdale

Done! Sorry :(

Hey, you changed it. 8) You'd be surprised how many don't. This way the thread doesn't get locked.

My chief story (I have several) has 235 reviews and 60,810 views. That's a ratio of 1:258. That's because I'm a terrifically slow writer and go through long periods without updates. Check the publication date on OB and be appalled.

The ratio of reviews to chapters (26) is 9:1. Again, it would probably be better if I was a more disciplined writer, time-wise, so it would receive a more optimal viewership. Still, in view of the fact that all of the characters are OCs, I don't think it's too shabby...

6/12/2012 #9
Ragnelle

I don't think it looks too bad, either.

My main story (recently completed) have so far 91 reviews on 22 chapters, a bit more than four reviews pr chapter. I don't think I will get very many more reviews as time goes by (some, but not a heap), and new readers are more likely to review just the first or the last chapter, but not each one as they read, now that it is finished. I got one new reader just about a week ago, very enthusiastic, who had read all chapters, and then reviewed the whole story in the last one. That is more the norm, I think, when it comes to finished stories, or stories with a lot of chapters written.

So far that story has 12 512 hits, so the ratio there is 1: 137,5. That will likely change, and the ratio will go up (more hits pr review).

The sequel got a review very quickly, so I expect the ratio to change there. Probably about the same, but I am not sure. The first chapter of the first story was posted almost two years ago, and got quite a lot of reviews. It has dwindled since then, generally, and I don't expect the same now. But a similar ratio as the first will be good, I think.

6/12/2012 #10
BrokenRepublic

My main story just broke 20,000 hits today. It's 24 chapters long at approximately 161,000 words. So far it has 134 reviews, but I've noticed that as the story has progressed, favs and alerts have risen whereas reviews per chapter have declined. A very strange phenomenon... However, I should note that the majority of my reviewers leave highly detailed messages; I seldom ever get "rite moar plz" type of responses, of which I am eternally thankful.

In terms of what's "normal", it depends on the fandom. The main fandom I write for ranks as the #1 popular category under video games with a huge fanbase and readership, so it's only natural that my numbers are high. It's a rarity to see a story--even a small one or horrendously written one--without at least one review just a few hours after it's published. Some fangirls in my fandom will review and "squee" at just about anything. It's actually rather funny to watch.

6/12/2012 #11
pyrrhicvictoly

My most popular story has 25,660 hits and 120 reviews, which is an anomaly compared to all my other fics. Most have less than 1000 hits / 10 reviews. I think I'm doing okay, all things considered. The hits keep trickling in even though I'm horribly disorganized and undisciplined with my writing/posting schedule.

6/12/2012 #12
Enzonia

Also, sadly my latest chapter has had 4 hits. 4. And that wasn't even for the chapter I wrote yesterday. No-one has read that, even though I spent ages on it :(

I feel so disappointed when I get 0 views. I've gone down to '1' for each of my latest chapters. How can you get people to continue reading after the first chapter (which has 133 views).

6/12/2012 #13
Surely Blue

Let me check... okay... my one and only story for the X/1999 fan-dom has 0 Reviews, 44 Hits, and 2 Favs. I was able to contact the second person who favorited it - the first had Private Messaging disabled.

6/13/2012 #14
pyrrhicvictoly

Traffic will vary from fandom to fandom. If your fandom is currently very popular, your story might have gotten buried under the ton of other new stories that get published every day.

It takes a while to get your name out and build up a reader base. Just keep at it and eventually your hits will stabilize. It took me about a year to get to the point where I had a steady amount of hits every day - that's across all of my fics, though. I have some fics that will go for weeks without a single hit sometimes. And that's perfectly normal, too. Don't let it discourage you. :)

6/13/2012 #15
cathrl

Um...if you wrote something yesterday and it's already been posted, you haven't spent ages on it. You haven't had time to spend ages on it. "Ages" on a chapter is certainly measured in weeks and probably in months.

I'd suggest you edit your first chapter. It starts off with a block paragraph mixing up loads of different people's dialogue. Actually you need to look at that throughout your story - sometimes it's well-presented, but there are a lot of walls of text (i.e. massively long paragraphs). They're difficult to read, especially on a screen, and they will put people off. Break it up a lot more, start a new paragraph for each speaker every time, and I'd bet you get a lot more people not hitting the back button.

6/13/2012 #16
Miss Shad

My current focus, Full Circle, has 9,434 hits and 40 reviews as of this moment.

6/13/2012 #17
Ragnelle

Um...if you wrote something yesterday and it's already been posted, you haven't spent ages on it. You haven't had time to spend ages on it. "Ages" on a chapter is certainly measured in weeks and probably in months.

I have to agree with this. I began working on my main story almost three years ago, and I waited about half a year or more before I began posting the first chapter. Granted, I did not work on only that chapter all that time, but back-story, plotting etc took at least the first couple of months of working. I was about six chapters ahead when I began posting, and I actually began posting a bit too soon: I had to go back and make adjustment on an early (posted) chapter. I wanted to avoid that, and would have if I had waited a bit longer to begin posting.

Writing the first draft of a chapter takes me a couple of weeks, usually. Maybe less if time and inspiration allows, but usually not. And then it will need editing. it's only when I try to participate in some WriMos that I write quicker. (Only one I've completed so dar, though). So writing one day and then posting, is not ages.

Catrl has good advice, though. First chapters are important, and if that make people turn away, it does not help whether you improve later on. They won't see the later chapters.

But also be aware that the latest drama has made traffic slow down a little on this site. Or may have, in the most affected fandoms. And time make for changes. I know that a lot of people that reviewed when I posted the first chapters of my WIP, are rarely around on this site anymore, so I don't expect the same, first, response for the second part of the story as I got for the first. But I have also gained new readers as the first book progressed, so...

6/13/2012 #18
Ventisquear

My main story has 19 chapters, 26 104 hits and 177 reviews. It's a better average, but not above it, for my fandom. The top stories get 20 or more reviews per chapter... so complaints of people from big fandoms that they 'only' get 30 reviews sounds pretty funny, to us. :D

A story written and published within one day is like a miracle to me. It can only happen if I write for 10 minutes challenge. The last chapter took me 49 hours to write, and left me completely drained after that.

6/13/2012 #19
Surely Blue

Whoot! Miss Shad just improved the tally! Thank you very much.

Now, I have 1 Review(s), 46 Hits, and 3 Favs.

Personally, I wouldn't say X/1999 is a densely populated fan-dom. The hiatus did its damage, so I'm happy with the above results. "Take the editing process seriously." and "Be patient." - are the two pieces of advice that I can easily dish out to any fellow writer(s).

6/13/2012 #20
Challenger2011

My most popular story has 104 reviews and 12,056 hits. Considering the fact that it's complete, I don't think the reviews and hits will change too much until I put up a sequel.

The rest of my fics are all under 10,000 hits. Of my in-progress multi-chapter ones, one has 41 reviews and 2,278 hits, and the other has 19 reviews and 884 hits. I don't think the second one is ever going to be that popular.

6/13/2012 #21
JadedPhoenixBurning

Well, the hits/visitor ratio depends on the fandom that you write in. My average Dukes of Hazzard story has about 5,000 hits. My Sailor Moon story has already reached about 62,000 hits and I'm still gaining readers. As far as reviews, I average one review for every 1686.3 words on Dukes where as I get one review for every 264 words on the Sailor Moon fandom. A big difference in the review count but one fandom is much bigger than the other so the traffic and reviewers would be impossible to compare.

6/13/2012 #22
Lorendiac

My most popular single-chapter story has 4418 hits and 14 reviews.

My longer story with the most hits is a Teen Titans fanfic with 10 chapters (but it's unfinished), 16,936 hits, and 65 reviews. (The fandom of the Teen Titans cartoons is a particularly large and active one on this site; I've noticed I get significantly better-than-average numbers of hits and reviews when I post in there.)

On the other hand, my longest story (26 chapters at the moment) had been coming out in monthly installments for over a year before it finally got its FIRST review. (Even now, it only has 7 reviews and 3183 hits.) It is set in a fandom which simply doesn't have the same level of activity as the Cartoons -- Teen Titans area of the site. Also, it features a Very Obscure Canonical Character as the narrator; we're not talking anybody who has serious name recognition among comic book fans.

P.S. I see other people in here are talking about possible drawbacks of a story written entirely in one day. In counterpoint, it's worth mentioning something: Of the many one-shot stories I've written, the second most popular (in number of hits -- and it's THE most popular in terms of reviews) was written in a few hours and posted the following morning.

It's only 1645 words. It was the FIRST thing I had ever posted in the fandom in question, so I sure wasn't counting on having lots of "name recognition" working in my favor when people were browsing the "Just In" page for that area and wondering if they wanted to give my new one-shot a try.

A few years after I posted it, the silly thing now has 2605 hits and 18 reviews. 67 people have added it to Favorites and 4 people have added it to their C2s.

You never quite know what you will get!

6/13/2012 #23
Ventisquear

Oh, I didn't mean that story written in one day is 'bad', or not well written. Only that it's impossible for me. Sometimes I envy those that can write fast. I wish I could, but even if I try Write or Die or similar things, it doesn't work. It creates too much stress and eventually creates a block - I stare on the screen and my mind is completely blank, I can't write any more. :)

6/13/2012 #24
That Way

It really just depends on many factors; chaptered fic vs one-shot (and the more chapters, the more opportunities for readers to leave reviews), how quickly the story gets updated (a day or two between updates vs month-long waits for new chapters), whether the fic is complete or not, if it has a sequel/prequel, and most importantly the fandom.

For instance, my fic has over 73,000 hits and 609 reviews which probably sounds awesome. BUT it's in the Harry Potter fandom where that many reviews are nothing. I've seen fics with 8000 reviews in that fandom and there are probably more popular fics than that one. Under my pairing, my fic's not even in the top 50 highest reviewed.

As others have mentioned, # of hits to reviews is probably the best measure, so long as you could find out a decent ratio for your fandom. Mine's roughly 120:1 which I think is actually pretty good (though I have no basis for comparison) since I can see that about 1/3 of my hits come from people who check out the first chapter and back out again for one reason or another and never go on to chapter 2.

6/13/2012 #25
thelastpen

The most popular of the stories my co-writer and I have up at the moment is complete at 51 chapters and 251,733 words. It's got 838 reviews on it, but I couldn't tell you the hits as she uploaded it to her account since I post the LJ and AO3 versions.

The most popular of my personal just by me stories is incomplete at 27 chapters and 74,022 words with 98 reviews and 45,627 hits, but it's been up for well over a year now.

Not really sure what any of that proves. My fandom's pretty busy right now... even if a lot of us do kinda hate the canon.

6/13/2012 #26
Ragnelle

I'm not saying that "fast" equals "bad". I was simple contesting that a chapter written in a day, is a chapter the author worked ages on. One day is not "ages". Of course, if all you did that day, was to write, then, yes, you would have put a lot of work into the chapter. I would still not call it "ages".

One story of mine that did rather well, was written in an evening. I have no hit/review ratio because I have only posted it one place so far, and that was in the challenge/competition I wrote it for, but since it won, I call that good. It need some mayor rewriting before I will post it, so I was surprised. I even found, after the competition was over, that I had a character called X-- simply because I had not given it (it was a horse) a name while I wrote, and forgot to find a name and correct it before I submitted the story. I found that rather embarrassing.

So, yes, the time spend and the popularity of the story do not always correlate.

I am in a relatively big fandom, but it seems like the fanbase has been moving elsewhere, and/or a lot of writers have stopped writing and reading, so there is a change also in reviews. I see that early stories have generally much higher numbers of reviews than what is posted now.

6/13/2012 #27
aruyo

There are a lot of factors behind reviews.

For example, the number of chapters. I have a three chapter story that currently has around thirty reviews. It sounds like a lot, but simple division says that each chapter is averaging ten reviews. It's still an impressive amount, but it's not amazing. I also have some one-shots that reach nine to fifteen reviews each. To me, those are more impressive, especially when some of my stories only get two or three. That's not it, though.

The popularity of the fandom in question is also important. If you're posting in a popular fandom like Harry Potter, for example, you have a wide reach, but it's also difficult to get readers, since the fandom updates so quickly. If you're posting in a slow fandom, you have a much smaller pool of readers, but those readers are also more likely to read your story, because it might remain on the first page for hours or even days.

The time and day are also important. Generally, my recommendation if you're posting in a slow fandom is to post on Sunday evening in order to have the best possible audience. For a fast fandom, I usually do it on Friday. But that's just my style, and there are some faults with that logic.

Your summary is a big indicator of story quality. For that matter, some people pander to what the fandom likes. For example, the Hetalia fandom enjoys slash. Gen and original flavor stories are sometimes overlooked there. It's sad, but the fandom does have a few popular gen fics, so it's no reason to be discouraged.

Lastly, there's the matter of your popularity as an author. If you're only just starting out, then three or four reviews for a chapter is impressive. Usually, the more people favorite and alert you, the more reviews you get. So if you have, say, thirty dedicated readers, you can expect seven to ten reviews per story.

All of these factors are important, and there are a lot I haven't written. But I'd be proud of your stories no matter how many reviews they have. As I'm sure someone has mentioned, reviews are not equal to quality. Just believe in your writing and never stop trying to improve.

6/13/2012 . Edited 6/13/2012 #28
Fliers

My 'main' fic has 11,182 hits, 47k words, 11 chapters, and 140 reviews. My only one shot has 314 hits, 6k words, and 12 reviews.

I think it's sort of interesting, because I didn't actually spend a lot of time on my 'main' fic if you consider the amount of time spent writing each chapter. I usually banged out a chapter in a day. On the other hand, I spent like...a week on that one-shot, cutting out scenes, pruning down extraneous words, revising endlessly, all that haha. I guess since it was my first one-shot, I felt the need to work a lot on it. Anyways I doubt I'll be getting any more hits on my fics either way, so yeah.

@aruyo: Sunday evening? That's interesting! I've noticed that for me I seem to get more hits if I post it on Friday afternoon. Maybe it's just because of the dominant age group of my fandom. I can't really say if it's fast or slow though since I haven't posted outside of it yet...

6/13/2012 . Edited 6/13/2012 #29
cathrl

it might remain on the first page for hours or even days

There are stories on the first page of my main fandom from 2010. It's in the top 20% of anime fandoms when you sort by popularity. My other fandom's in the top 5% of TV fandoms. You get about a week on the first page there.

It's only a tiny number of the most popular fandoms where posting time makes any difference at all.

6/13/2012 #30
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