I published a short story on Facebook. Here are the mistakes I made…

A few months ago, in May, I decided I’d try something new; a little experiment. I’d take one of my stories and publish it on Facebook in a serialized format; publish bits of it over several days and see if I could get a following for it.

The story was The Minister of Fudgery & Wizardry, previously unpublished. It is only now that I have the courage to write about this little experiment.

My Facebook Page then was really new, so I had a few hundred followers. It didn’t really work. In the end, I promoted the posts to get any sort of traction.

Here are the things that I know I did wrong:

  1. My page did not have any sort of loyal following so it wasn’t a good platform to try this. You can’t expect solid feedback out of thin air. You need to build a following first or leverage your following on other platforms. Now, there is some content that lends itself to virality and gets shared many times even after losing any connection to its original source. This story wasn’t it.
  2. I didn’t push the post hard enough. In hindsight, I should have made as much noise as I could about it on my personal social media profiles, but I struggle with self-promotion. I have spent years as an arts and culture journalist talking about other artists, but for some reason, it’s hard to talk about my own work. This is something I am working on.
  3. This third one is something I am still investigating. Do long text formats work on Facebook? Not sure. This story was serialised. Seven parts; the shortest being 440 words and the longest 760. Too long for this type of writing and platform?

So, back to the drawing board. I would like to try it again someday, with a better strategy and more confidence in my work. Self-promotion! Self-promotion!



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