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  • E Sisters

    Stories about two sisters who are best friends, and rulers of Equestria
    6,514 words · 13,417 views  ·  1,297  ·  18
  • E Mortality Report

    Celestia writes a report to her queen about what she's learned from living among mortals.
    4,313 words · 18,227 views  ·  1,486  ·  27
  • E Experience

    Celestia is thousands of years old, and has experienced almost everything the world has to offer. But there's one ordinary thing she's never experienced.
    1,289 words · 4,120 views  ·  645  ·  15
  • E Big Mac Reads Something Purple

    Twilight asks Big MacIntosh to read to the Cutie Mark Crusaders while she runs an errand.
    3,720 words · 4,864 views  ·  407  ·  11
  • E The Saga of Dark Demon King Ravenblood Nightblade, Interior Design Alicorn

    Should the incredibly powerful new alicorn pursue his destiny as savior of Equestria, or his love of interior design?
    4,940 words · 10,234 views  ·  810  ·  34
  • T Bad Horse's Bedtime Stories for Impressionable Young Colts and Fillies

    Bad Horse retells bedtime stories to teach foals the real facts of life.
    2,642 words · 1,213 views  ·  240  ·  7
  • T Fluttershy's Night Out

    Fluttershy would like to be a tree. But she doesn't want to be an animal.
    7,936 words · 11,486 views  ·  476  ·  20 · sex
  • T Old friends

    Philomena is reborn after she dies. Ponies are reborn before they die. Kind of. A little. It's hard for a phoenix to understand.
    1,582 words · 1,528 views  ·  259  ·  9

Blog Posts333

  • Sunday
    I don't want to know...

    26 comments · 302 views
  • Sunday
    Fifty shades of marketing

    My question about "story views" reminded me...

    "Fifty Shades of Grey" was a spectacularly popular Twilight fan-fiction; it had over two million downloads online. The publishing giant Vintage Press saw that number and realized they had a hit on their hands. They filed off the Twilight serial numbers, put it in print, marketed it like hell, and now it's sold 60 million copies, satisfying a huge but previously unrealized market for bad BDSM chick-lit-porn.

    Part of that is true.

    Though the Twilight fandom was very large, it was still too small, I thought, for one story to have two million reads. A little searching and I found the original quote was "over two million hits". It was reported by Anne Jamison, author of "fic: Why Fan-Fiction is Taking Over the World". I emailed her and asked where that number came from. She replied,

    The "millions" numbers I had were not public; I had them from screenshots from various writers. The counts were from fanfiction.net which, for the Twilight fandom, remained the biggest hub--most if not all stories that were also posted at Twilighted.net and TWCS were also posted on ff.net. Ff.net tallies reads but doesn't--unlike Wattpad or AO3--make them public.

    But for all the sites, read or hit counts are for every time someone clicks on the story--so if they click through the front page to get to chapter 37, that's 2 reads.

    Fan-fiction is published one chapter at a time. "Fifty Shades of Grey" has 26 chapters, but when it was originally published on fanfiction.net as "Master of the Universe", it had over 100 chapters.  More digging by gwern showed that the story had over 40,000 reviews when it was on chapter 70. It had 37,000 reviews when it reached 2 million hits. So let's say it had 65 chapters when it reached 2 million hits on fanfiction.net.

    fanfiction.net adds 1 hit every time any page of the story is reloaded. If you go to chapter 1 and read all the way through to chapter 120 in one sitting, that's 120 hits. If you log in, see it updated, go to chapter 1, and then go from there to the new chapter, that's at least 239 hits to read the book. If you refresh the page, that's another hit. (I verified this myself by refreshing one chapter of one story of mine 3 times on fanfiction.net, checking the stats before and after.) If you read half of one chapter one day, and log in again and finish it the next, that's at least 2 hits. If you leave it in an open tab on your computer, that's 1 hit every time you open your browser. If you reread the story, the hits double. If you click on the story each day to see if it's updated, hits go way up.

    Two million hits on a 65-chapter story means a theoretical maximum of 2,000,000 / 65 = 30,769 readers had read it on fanfiction.net when that "two million" figure was reported. More likely, given re-readings, users who always go in through chapter 1, users who quit halfway through, browser refreshes, etc., perhaps 10,000 readers finished it on fanfiction.net, and let's say another 10,000 on other sites. That's about as many readers as finished My Roommate is a Vampire.

    What actually happened was that a fanfiction that had been read by at most a few tens of thousands of people was reported on in a way that misled publishers into thinking that it had millions of readers, when really, it just had a lot of chapters. So they put a major marketing campaign behind it, and sold tens of millions of copies.

    But was Fifty Shades of Grey really what people wanted? Or would the same thing have happened with almost any book they'd marketed as heavily?

    27 comments · 243 views
  • Sunday
    What do "story views" mean now?

    The site upgrade is pretty awesome; I'm still discovering big changes. But I'm confused by the new meaning of "story views". I saw my stats page says I have 242,137 story views, and I thought, Awesome! A little while ago I had only 100,000!

    Then I realized that was impossible.

    Exhibit A: Terein. 1 story. 1 chapter. 188 views of that chapter. Yet his/her stats page says 381 story views.

    I had never heard of Terein until just now, when I went looking for someone with just 1 story with just 1 chapter, and as I was typing out his/her username just now, I got a pop-up notification saying "Terein posted a new thread in The Writer's Group."


    But anyway.

    Exhibit B: Web of Hope. Might be reading this. 3 stories, 6 chapters between them, 1242 views across those 6 chapters. Stats pages says 2059 story views.

    Story views--what do they MEAN?

    18 comments · 182 views
  • Saturday
    Symbolism in the Doctor Who episode "Amy's Choice"

    A good Doctor Who plot has two plots. One is the Doctor saving the world. Another is helping somebody (possibly the Doctor) deal with some personal problem. Ideally, these two plots should connect.


    At the start of the episode, Amy is engaged to marry Rory, but still finds herself attracted to the Doctor. Then a mysterious “Dream Lord” springs a trap for the Doctor, forcing Amy, Rory, and the Doctor to move back and forth between two realities. In one, the Doctor is visiting Amy and Rory, who have been married a long time and are having a baby; they are all chased by murderous old people. In the other, Amy and Rory are travelling with the Doctor, but they’re all trapped in a TARDIS drained of power and are slowly freezing to death. Each time they wake up in one reality, they feel convinced that it is the real world, and the other is a dream. But time passes in the other reality while they aren’t in it, and they don’t have enough time to escape the threats in both realities. The Dream Lord tells them that they must choose which reality is real, and kill themselves in the one that is a dream. For reasons I no longer remember, Amy must be the one who chooses which of these worlds is real.

    Of course the worlds also symbolize the two men she feels she needs to choose between. And her choice ends up depending not on reasoning out which world is real, but realizing which man she wants to be with (Rory). (There’s a crossed circuit in the symbolism, because she has to choose the Doctor's world rather than Rory's world in order to be with Rory, who was killed in Rory's world. He should have been killed in the Doctor's world if they wanted to keep that symbolism straight. Though they way they did it still worked.)

    After she chooses, and they kill themselves in Rory’s world, the Doctor kills them all in the Doctor’s world--and they wake up back on the TARDIS. The Doctor explains how he figured out that …

    … wait for it…

    … both of the worlds Amy thought she had to choose between were just dreams.

    Whoa. See how that fits with the symbolism?

    In Rory-world, the danger was old people. In Doctor-world, the danger was freezing to death. Almost as if she were afraid of growing old and boring with Rory, and afraid of a cold life with the Doctor, who did not love her.

    So Amy has now resolved to marry Rory, but has also learned that both of the futures she imagined she was choosing between--as well as her greatest fears about those futures--were all just dreams, which may or may not happen regardless of her choice.

    Thus, this episode has one adventure plot-line and one love-life plot-line, and they are unified completely by the end. But which came first: The adventure plot, or the love plot?

    In this case, we know: The love plot came first, according to Wikipedia.. And that doesn’t surprise me. Everything came back to Amy’s love quandary. It would have been amazingly good luck if a random adventure story had all that fall out of it in the second draft. It can happen, but not reliably.

    (Bonus: There’s a third plot line in this episode: Who is the Dream Lord? The answer to that tells you a lot about the Doctor.)

    NOTE: I'm linking to this post from the Story & Episode Annotations & Analysis group, which everybody seems to have forgotten about.

    7 comments · 222 views
  • Wednesday
    ROF1. A general evolutionary theory of fiction

    What’s a story?

    "Story" is a very broad category, even when counting only fiction. It includes:

    - nonsense stories that are supposed to be stupid and make no sense:

    One fine day in the middle of the night,

    Two dead boys got up to fight.

    Back to back they faced each other,

    Drew their swords and shot each other.

    A deaf policeman heard the noise,

    Came and killed the two dead boys.

    - meta-fiction (stories about stories), like Borges' stories that are literary analyses of imaginary stories ("Pierre Menard, author of the Quixote" is my favorite)

    - ancient Greek rape comedies [h]

    - Goodnight, Moon

    - Nietzsche's Thus Spake Zarathustra

    - Waiting for Godot, a story about nothing happening

    - this story from the infancy gospel of Thomas:

    After that again he went through the village, and a child ran and dashed against his shoulder. And Jesus was provoked and said unto him: Thou shalt not finish thy course. And immediately the child fell down and died. ... And the parents of him that was dead came unto Joseph, and blamed him, saying: Thou that hast such a child canst not dwell with us in the village: or do thou teach him to bless and not to curse: for he slayeth our children. And Joseph called the young child apart and admonished him, saying: Wherefore doest thou such things, that these suffer and hate us and persecute us? But Jesus said: I know that these thy words are not thine: nevertheless for thy sake I will hold my peace: but they shall bear their punishment. And straightway they that accused him were smitten with blindness.

    I don’t believe there are rules about what kinds of fictional narratives can be set down as text and appreciated. Anything goes. So what am I talking about when I talk about rules of fiction?

    A general evolutionary theory of fiction

    I think people have evolved cognitive dog-treat-recognizers, things in their brains that give them little jolts of pleasure for doing things that tend to get their genes propagated. When we read fiction, we get these doggy treats even for things we didn’t do ourselves. [1]

    The evolutionary explanation for erotica is obvious: People enjoy sex. (I don't know why there isn't food porn, too.) Bashing your opponent on the head gives you a different kind of jolt of pleasure. Action stories are efficient structures that give you jolts of pleasure at bashing other people on the head without suffering the (culturally-specific) jolts of guilt that prevent people from bashing each other on the head all the time.

    “Dramatic” stories play on the reader’s emotional bonds to the characters. This requires a complicated story structure to build up these bonds, then yank on them so you react as if these things were happening to your friends.

    Dramatic stories are like roller-coasters. Roller coaster design has rules. Some are engineering: The track has to go up before it can go down. Some have to do with what patterns of tension and release feel dramatic: You need to cluster small, fast curves and loops together; you need to have moments of respite between these clusters.

    None of the examples I listed at the start of this post are dramatic, except for the rape comedies. So drama isn’t found in all fiction. But it’s in a hell of a lot of fiction. Drama is the backbone behind most good stories. It’s what you feel when something is at stake and you care what happens. When people say stories must have conflict, or that there must be two false climaxes followed by a climax and resolution, or that a play or movie must have a three-act structure, they’re talking about dramatic stories. If you read Syd Field, Jack Bickham, or Writer’s Digest, you’re going to get theories of dramatic structure. Most of what is written about how to write novels and movie scripts, is written as if conflict-based dramatic stories were the only kind of story. So they’re a pretty important class of stories! [2]

    BUT. There are dozens, maybe hundreds, of sets of “rules” about dramatic stories, or “basic plots” of dramatic stories. They’re… helpful, maybe. But most of them just address the plot: What sequence of events happen in a story? They’re stuff like this:

    1.        Once upon a time there was …

    2.        Every day …

    3.        One day …

    4.        Because of that …

    5.        Because of that …

    6.        Until finally …

    What’s the point of that? You’d have to really work at it to write a story that didn’t fit that structure. I want to understand what my brain is looking for when deciding whether to give me a mental doggy treat. Knowing a hundred slightly different plot sequences that trigger it is a good start, but we can do better.

    “Literature” is, I’m gonna say for the moment, stories that make you think about things outside of the story. In my mind, Song of Ice and Fire is fantasy, while Lord of the Rings is fantasy and literature. Twelfth Night is (bad) romance. Romeo and Juliet is (bad) romance, and literature. 2001 is science fiction. Brave New World is science fiction and literature. If you read Aristotle or Dramatica theory, you’re going to be reading about how stories make you think.

    Literary stories, I think, reward you for learning. They're simulations that teach you what might happen if you do one thing in some set of circumstances. The dog-treat mechanism in your head drives you to seek literary lessons that tackle the questions currently important to you. This may account for the strange fact that there are specific story types, like alicorn OC stories, that many people love and many other people think are stupid. Maybe they’re beneficial to children, or to people struggling with self-confidence.

    So stories don’t serve any single function. There are as many broad, top-level story types as there are evolved patterns of experience that trigger mental doggy treats, and a good story will trigger lots of them. But a few top-level story types are very general and very important, and I want to understand them better. If our more-specific theories about how stories work mate well with the top-level evolutionary justification, it’s a sign that we may be onto something.

    A general evolutionary theory of popular bad fiction

    The brain doesn’t expect your experiences to be fictional. So it gives you a reward even when you’re just imagining someone else having these experiences. An ape gets a big jolt of relief or exhilaration for outwitting a predator or enemy, and that’s fine, because that doesn’t happen much in the wild. But your brain wasn’t informed that you can sit down at B. Dalton’s and read trashy novels and make it give you that jolt every ten minutes, for things that don’t benefit your genes at all.

    Some “popular but bad” story types might be ones that fool your brain into thinking it’s succeeding or learning when it isn’t. Nonsense stories, for example, are bad baby literature. Babies learn fastest by looking at things they haven't seen before. They get cognitive dog treats for looking at anything surprising, even if it's surprising just because it's really stupid. Nonsense stories don’t help anybody learn anything, but because they’re full of things that don’t make sense, they keep triggering your brain’s reward for paying attention to things that you don’t understand yet.

    Even stories that benefit you some way can be “junk stories” if you indulge in them too much. In a world where we can seek out exactly the kind of food we want, we end up eating too much fat, salt, and sugar. In a world where we can seek out exactly the kind of story experience we want, we end up reading “too much” (from the perspective of our genes) of certain kinds of stories.

    So I expect successful stories to include “good good stories” that reward you for confronting things in fiction that help you or your genes in real life, “junk food stories” that we over-indulge in because they give us big rewards for things that don’t happen very often in real life, and “good bad stories” that reward you for mentally jacking off [α].


    h. A Greek rape comedy is a once-popular story type in which a young man prepares to marry a young women who, unknown to him, was recently raped. When he realizes she's pregnant, he must cast her off as a shamed woman. But then it turns out that he was the man who raped her, so it's okay. Everybody has a good laugh and they get married and live happily ever after. (This summary is a  little unfair to the Greeks, since they didn't have a concept of, or at least a word for, rape. On the other hand, that in itself is another indictment of them.)

    1. Transhumans will of course evolve brains smart enough to distinguish real experiences from fictional ones, and to reward them only for real ones. They will therefore no longer enjoy fiction.

    2. It’s hard (maybe impossible) to distinguish between drama and tension. Dramatic structure, whether it’s 3-act theory or scene and sequel structure, can be used to create drama, but it can also be used in action movies where we arguably don’t care much about the characters, like Crank.

    α. Not that jacking off is bad. Or using birth control. You don't always gotta do what your genes want you to. Usually, your genes are looking out for you. But plenty of stories are designed to teach you altruistic lessons that are good for your genes, or your society, to your detriment!

    39 comments · 271 views
  • ...

To Holmes, she is always the mare.  In his eyes she eclipses the whole of her sex, and fills him with admiration and loathing.  Whether she in fact stole the Starry Night was ultimately beside the point.  What mattered to Holmes was that he had been matched at his own game, by a mare; that it had not been altogether unpleasant; and that she had caused him, however briefly, to turn his keen and unflinching gaze upon himself.

First Published
22nd Jul 2012
Last Modified
29th Jul 2012
#1 · 119w, 1d ago · · · 11. A real crime ·

100 deviantart points per story to the first reader who identifies the two stories that large parts of the first two paragraphs are stolen from, and 200 points to the first reader who identifies the one-sentence theft in chapter 3 (not from Doyle).

And 200 points to the first reader who finds all 4 secret messages!

Updates will be every day starting Monday at 9 or 10pm.

If anybody can think of a catchier name and/or description for the story, please suggest it in the comments.  A name change is likely, because this is a boring title.  A cover picture change is also likely later on, because I haven't got anyplace in the story to put the original cover art.  I'll avoid changing both at the same time.

Thanks to Ickhart, GhostOfHeraclitus, and Vimbert the Unimpressive for pre-reading and pointing out many problems!

Luna's Starry Night is by RK-d.  atryl designed French Rarity and the gallery setting; BB-Kenobi put them together and re-illustrated them.   Brianna Wainwright (DracosDerpyHooves on deviantart.com) did the EqD cover image, and two other drawings that you'll find within the story.  Other credits are given with the pictures.

#2 · 118w, 2d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

The fact that this has gone unnoticed is a travesty.

#3 · 118w, 2d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


Thanks!  But I haven't submitted it yet.  Still revising.  How did you find it?

#4 · 118w, 2d ago · 1 · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


Oh, derp. Wow. I'm an idiot.

Yeah, I liked it a lot. Guess I've tipped my hand now by doing such a stupid thing, but oh well.

#5 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

The first paragraph is from a Scandal in Bohemia. I recognize the second paragraph, but I don't have the time to go through the stories and find it.

#6 · 117w, 1d ago · 1 · · 2. Three tickets to a crime ·

I don't remember where I saw van Gogh's Starry Night, but the description in the story was how I felt about it.

#7 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


Correct!  PM me with your deviantart account, if you have one, & I'll send you

... Well, no.  But you will get


(This is evil on a budget.)

#8 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

>>953321 Holy crap, really? I feel validated now. I actually read your first comment as 100 internet points.

I always feel considerably less intelligent after reading stories as well thought out and executed as this one is for some reason. I don't know if it's the fact that so many words that I've never used are used in them or what, but yes.

Good show old bean, jolly good show.

There was only one minuscule error. A Mr. F. When. (that gets me too).

#12 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 3. An unlikely suspect ·

:moustache: I would read more but I hear coffee calling.

#13 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

This is relevant to my interest, keep up the good work.

#14 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

[strike]Comments from a week ago. Front page today.

Not sure what's going on, but I'll refrain from pointing fingers due to the possibility of me being wrong.[/strike]

Nevermind; I just read the comments. I'm a retard. :facehoof:

#15 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

I am so following. :heart:


#17 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

I'll consider reading it when it's finished.

#18 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

I'm rapidly running out of reasons to not read the source material.

BRB, googling "Arthur Conan Doyle"

#19 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

I've had the exceptional pleasure of helping pre-read this lovely thing. I can't recommend it enough. Also, since I know how the rest of the story goes allow me to share a not-really-spoiler: It gets even better. Seriously. The story goes to a very interesting place that took me by surprise. Read it. You won't be sorry.

#20 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


The name is "Mr. F."  This is a Victorian way of writing - the premise was that the viewpoint narrator is telling a true story, and making real-life characters semi-anonymous by using only their initials.  Unfortunately the F came at the end of a sentence.  I think that's the correct way to write it.  It is jarring, though, so correctness is a poor excuse, and I changed it.

A work of art this is, I only hope that the latter pieces are as good as this one :moustache:

#22 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

Wow This story is SOOOOOOO good! Cant wait to read more!

#23 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

OK, I'm baffled.  Why isn't this story called "A Scandal In Equestria"?

#24 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


Hmm.  On one hand, it doesn't involve anything I'd describe as a scandal.  On the other hand, that title would give readers familiar with A Scandal in Bohemia an idea where the story is going.

Plus, I could lure in readers hoping for some Twilestia...  How would this do for the cover art?

#25 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

UH Oh! A clash of egos the size of Holmes and Trixi might cause a sigularity to form. I suprised they do not knock heads together when the both enter a room :)

the beginning sounds like the intro of a scandal in Bohemia from the adventures of Sherlock Holmes.


#27 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

Loving this so far.

Mystery that not only doesn't shy away from magic but brings it to the forefront, and well-written Trixie, and earth pony/unicorn tension?  Instant follow.

"It is the dregs, the leavings, the last resort. It is, in a word, ours, Watson."

Just wonderful.  Cannot wait to see where this goes.

#28 · 117w, 1d ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·

I liked this the first time I read it and I still enjoyed reading it a second time! :pinkiehappy: Congratulations on the excellent story and the feature on EqD!

#29 · 117w, 19h ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


Makes sense, but I couldn't help thinking of the Arrested Development connection.

Anyway, Fetlock seems to have an issue distinguishing bluster from actual ability, kinda odd when it seems that he deals with lies and half truths on a day to day basis, but maybe he sees something I don't.

#30 · 117w, 18h ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


I'm committing the oft-committed sin of making Trixie more competent than she is in canon.  Let's say she's had time to improve.  She's more generally useful as a character this way.  But you're right - I assumed by default that Holmes had done his homework, but Doyle would have stated that explicitly.

#31 · 117w, 13h ago · · · 4. Holmes unmasked ·


No, no.  That's,

Is this the real life?

Is this just fantasy?

Caught in a landslide,

no escape from reality...

>>956919  Had the same feeling.  I was reading it 2 weeks ago and I thought Bad Horse was rewriting the whole thing.

#33 · 117w, 3h ago · · · 5. Thrice-frightened ·

A marvelous distraction if I do say so myself.

the second paragraph is also familiar but i can't put my finger on it...:twilightangry2:

#35 · 116w, 6d ago · · · 5. Thrice-frightened ·

Nice plan.

#36 · 116w, 6d ago · · · 5. Thrice-frightened ·

Awaiting MOAR :flutterrage: .  Only time I've used that!

#37 · 116w, 6d ago · 1 · · 5. Thrice-frightened ·

I'll give Trixie that she has massive pony stones, for walking in there, breaking the painting out, and putting it right back in it's hole. Almost would be worth the hours of interrogation.

#38 · 116w, 6d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

:yay: for the update!  And no, I am not claiming... (someone else can get in trouble for that :trixieshiftright: )

#39 · 116w, 6d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

I checked the view count when I posted the chapter update: 475 readers.  I checked again one hour later, after the story had scrolled off the "Latest Updates" page: 477.  Ouch.  I had 700 referrals from EqD in the story's first day.  About 500 of them followed the link here to fimfiction, then left without clicking on the first chapter.

Here's a question for all of you.  Why did you decide to read the story?  Did anything almost make you not read it?

#40 · 116w, 6d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

I just thought this looked interesting, i am not sure why so many people didnt read this.

#41 · 116w, 6d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

gotta give you credit, you've got me interested. Bring in the worlds greatest detective, Trixie, and an original adventure, and suddenly you have me hooked on this story, Hope to see more soon, keep goin and stay golden^^

#42 · 116w, 5d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

This is one of the best fics I've read across all the fandom.  You capture the Victorian writing style, as well as the personalities of Holmes and Watson, with excellent accuracy and precision, and combine it with an intriguing plot that has a high dose of realism.  It is truly a delight to read.

#43 · 116w, 5d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

>>967721 Honestly the length of your individual chapters may be what's turning people away. I usually don't read a story unless it averages at least a thousand words a chapter. The only reason I decided to actually read your story (no offence intended) was because I followed the Equestria Daily link.

#44 · 116w, 5d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·


Do you prefer longer stories and avoid short stories?  I break stories up into 1000-word chapters because I look at the view counts on each chapter to find out where people stopped reading.  This is usually somewhere within the first 2000 words, so the first 2 chapters can be at most 1000 words each to learn where people stopped reading.

#45 · 116w, 5d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

>>971515 I avoid shorter stories for many reasons that probably only make sense in my head. The foremost reason is because I find longer chapters give the author a chance to do a better job of both world building and characterization. I also prefer longer stories because I enjoy stories that take more than three minutes for me to read. I think my total words read on fimfiction at this time is over 22 million [22,904,897(I had to check...)] I read quite quickly and I prefer a fully thought out single chapter that is several thousand words long to several snippets of story that leave me unsatisfied.

I could never publish the first chapter to a story before having written the ending - I always have to go back and change things to make the pieces fit together right.  The reason I release chapters one per day, instead of all at once, is so that the story will appear on the "Latest updates" page and attract new readers.

However, this isn't happening.  From the rate at which first-chapter views increase, it appears I've gotten approximately zero new readers from the "Latest Updates" page.  But I've lost about 160 readers who read the first 4 chapters, which were all posted at once, and haven't returned.

Is it better to release chapters on a regular basis, or put an entire story out there all at once?  Would you appreciate a story more, or less, if you didn't have to wait for the updates?


I have another story that's been troubling me for a long time, a tricky story with touchy subject matter.  It's a Fallout: Equestria one-shot, darker than this one.  I don't know if I should release it, re-write it, or obliterate it like a device heretic blog post.  The secret unpublished link is here.  It's not violent, but it is sad, sweet, and terrible.  I'd appreciate your opinions.

#47 · 116w, 5d ago · · · 6. Chivalry is not dead ·

I haven't read a detective story in quite a while.

Honestly, I've been reading this for a while- just never bothered to log in. xD

I'm rather a fan of this story so far, and I am keeping a steady eye out for it. I'd love it if you posted the rest of the story so I could just scarf it all down, but if that's not your style, then okay. I'd think a lot of other folks would feel similar. (That they'd like to be able to read the whole thing from word go, so to speak.)

Actually I prefer a somewhat longer wait. Sort of like French cuisine. Anticipation makes it all the more enjoyable.


I would suppose that it depends on the length of the chapters.

With shorter chapters it would be better to post them all at once. This allows the readers to read at their leisure.

With longer chapters spreading them out might work towards your advantage, seeing that the story has a large word count might stop them from beginning it in the first place.

EDIT: I know that when I post new chapters I pick up about ten new readers. How far they make it is a different issue...

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