What is nightwatcher’s perch?
Nightwatcher’s perch is the social media profile that posts novel-length stories. These posts vary in length, the most popular of which are 400 to 800 words. The idea behind these types of posts is that it’s a one time view into an interesting manuscript, without having to read a book. It gives people who don’t have time for books but still want an entertaining story something they can get on their phone or computer in just a few minutes while at work or during a commute. A nightwatcher’s perch usually has pictures and videos from their own life mixed in with the text to keep things fun and engaging. You can also see what people are eating for dinner and see how cute their pets are. It’s a way to see into someone else’s life.
What is the point of nightwatcher’s perch?
The main point is to get eyes on your work in progress. It’s a casual platform that you can post effectively, with almost no time or effort. If you make it interesting, people will read it and be interested enough in what you’re doing that they’ll ask questions, start discussions, etc. It’s more of a social network than a traditional platform, which makes it different from other writing platforms like Wattpad, Scribd, and Smashwords. There are no hard rules or restrictions. You can write in any genre and make the story as exciting or scary as you want. Other authors post their books to get book reviews, but that isn’t the purpose of nightwatcher’s perch. You’re not competing with anyone over sales or name recognition. It’s just to get your work out there and see if you have any people interested in what you do.
Isn’t that just goading people into buying your work?
No. Not in my experience. The majority of people who ask to see a full manuscript are asking because they’re an interested reader and aren’t expecting to be paid for their feedback. They want to know what happens next because they like the story, not because they are trying to save you time by being a copy editor for free. I think that’s why nightwatcher’s perch is so popular. It’s not pushy and it gives you an opportunity to engage with your readers without making them feel forced or obligated – it comes off as more genuine curiosity than anything else and people react well to that kind of approach.
What does this mean for writers?
It means that the book you’re working on will be more likely to get noticed. The people it will attract are the readers you already have – those readers who love your writing and want to read more, but who don’t have time to wait for the next novel in their favorite series. They’re going to tell their friends about it and spread the word, which is how any kind of marketing works – they talk about it until someone realizes they really like what you’re doing. You’ll also see an uptick in feedback that might make your book even better – suggestions on how to improve or strengthen a particular element, when there might be something that could be changed in a character’s motivation or dialogue. Your readers will likely love what you’re doing, but they’ll have something to say about it too. And I think that’s important. There is little point in doing something like this unless you get a little feedback to confirm that you’re onto something.
What does this mean for readers?
There are a lot of traditional novels out there; popular series that have been going on for years and all the books are already written and given to the publisher. But there are also books being written right now, by authors who post their work on nightwatcher’s perch – people with ideas and stories that might never see the light of day if it weren’t for an online platform like this. This is the future of publishing.
How do I join nightwatcher’s perch?
E-mail me at [email protected] with the subject [Nightwatcher’s Perch Submission] to have your story posted here – a minimum of 500 words and preferably no longer than 1500, or it will just end up getting lost in the overwhelming sea of great stories on Tapastic. Please include a link to your website in the e-mail so that I can verify you are who you say you are.
How can I get my story featured?
I will give priority to stories that are already on nightwatcher’s perch – stories that have already been posted. If there are pictures or videos in the text, I will give them more weight. The more original the concept, and the more compelling the story, the better. A self-promotional ad is not as suitable for nightwatcher’s perch as a novel-length piece of work by an established author who is posting a novelette or novella online.
What kind of genre can I post it in?
As long as it’s a finished story and there are no twists or cliffhangers at the end, any genre is fine. If your story idea has horror elements, then you can post it under horror. Science fiction or fantasy with unique premises will do much better than a run of the mill science fiction or fantasy story with an established protagonist and some magical creatures from the get go.