Ever happened to you that you had to leave a book midway because of any reason? Maybe the book was too long? Maybe it was too hard to read? Or maybe it had no twists and turns in a long time. Yes! It happens to most of us. As a reader, I can understand that it takes a lot of courage to give a book up. But what If I tell you that there’s a way of overcoming it? Yes, there is. It’s called serialized storytelling, and here I am going to talk about Reasons To Read Serialized Storytelling
I was recommended to read in series by a friend of mine, and I can’t thank her enough for it. Since I started reading serialized work, I’ve never gotten off it without completing it entirely. It’s not like I don’t read full-length novels anymore. It’s just that I’m more into serialized reading these days as it has several benefits.
Reasons To Read Serialized Storytelling—when work is broken down into several small parts, and each part is released at a regular interval of time, mainly in a weekly magazine or a weekly newspaper. These days, one can also read them online. Serialized storytelling is better than full-length ones (according to me) because it doesn’t get boring easily, it keeps you guessing at the end of every “episode”, and you don’t need to spend much time.
I know some of you might not be very amazed at the idea of reading in series. Even I was reluctant to do so initially, and once I gave it a try, I can’t stop now. If you’re still not convinced, let me help you understand in a bit more detail.
Why To Read Serialized Storytelling? Reasons
I love reading serialized work, and if anyone ever wants to, I’m always ready with my points to make the argument. Since I’ve seen many around me being a little held back for starting to read serialized work, I’m here, ready as ever, with my thought points that might help you clear yours.
1. You don’t Get Bored
Reading can never get boring, I get it, but it’s not the same with every book. Some books, after some time, get monotonous to read when nothing exciting or new happens for more than 15 pages. Don’t worry; it happens to me too. Even though the author tries their best to make the work as engaging as possible, there is some part where the readers (us) get hooked off the book, and that’s the moment when we think, “I think I need a break from this book”. Stuff like this didn’t happen when reading serialized work, as we will get only a certain potion to read at once.
Instead, it’ll make us more eager to know what happens next. Like this, there’s hardly any chance that any reader would leave the text mid-way, which has become very prominent these days with full-length novels.
The novel Great Expectations by Charles Dickens was originally published in serials in Dicken’s daily from December 1860 to August 1861. I believe that this novel became so puffed and loved because it was initially published in episodes. Had it been a full-length novel from the start, people might have found it a little confusing and hard to read.
2. You don’t Need to Spend too Much Time
Another problem that readers face is that novels take up too much time to be complete, and when something gets too interesting, we don’t feel like stopping, and boom, we’ve spent the entire day reading the book. Not that it’s a bad thing, it’s just that in today’s scenario, we have so much to do that we cannot devote the entire day to reading no matter how much we want to.
This problem does not arise while reading serialized work as we get only one episode a week, a month, or whatever the time is. Serialized Storytelling eliminates the problem for those who quit reading because of lack of time.
Let’s take George Eliot’s Middlemarch as an example. It is such an engaging book following more than one plot, but at the same time, it’s excessively long. Even Eliot didn’t want her work to be serialized, but it was the right decision to release the book in parts as it turned out to be more successful that way.
3. They Keep You Guessing
Do you like cliffhangers? Who am I kidding? No one likes them but let’s face it, cliffhangers are something that keeps us waiting for more. In a regular novel, the author may try to end the chapter with a cliffhanger, but the reader can always turn the page and start reading next to find out what happened next.
But one can’t do that with serialized work. If the author decides to end that part with a cliffhanger, you’ll have to wait for the next part to be released no matter what. There’s nothing you can do about it, which keeps you eagerly waiting for more. You’ll keep guessing stuff to yourself until the next episode is out. Serialized Storytelling make you stay hooked to the story.
In 2012, Amazon announced that they would re-publish Charles Dickens’s novels in their original serialized format. My elder cousin (also a reader) told me that she read Oliver Twist in serialized format in 2012. even though she already knew the entire tale, she was always excited for the next part.
4. A New Update Gets You Excited
Now, this point is related to the previous one. As mentioned above, the novel’s serialization keeps the reader guessing what will happen next. These days the internet is supreme, and most people read serialized work online instead of magazines and the national daily.
Serialized Storytelling led authors to advertise their work more conveniently and create hype. So, they do these days when the next part is awaited, they start dropping small glimpses, or you may say spoilers, to make us excited. And I would say it’s a great strategy because it works as always. A single update gets us all excited about what’s going to happen next.
The Vela by Yoon Ha Lee, Becky Chambers, Rivers Solomon, and SL Huang is an online serialized wok (audiobook) released in 2019. I still remember my friends, and I started it together, and we were so obsessed with it that we would go wild crazy whenever we got an update about it.
5. Connects You More With The Author
Serialized storytelling connects you more with the author. How? See, suppose a few parts of the story have been released, and you’ve read all of them. The recent one was just yesterday, so there is a 15-day gap for the next part to get out. But you’re already in love with the story, the characters, and the author. What would you do in the meantime? Yes, you will go online and explore more works of the same author. This will lead you to know more about the author’s life, their inspiration, the type of writer they are, and so much more. You will read more from the reader, which will lead you to eventually become a fan of that author.
This is one of the main reasons I think authors like Charles Dickens and Mark Twain became so great with such a massive fan following. Though their novels are super addictive indeed, I feel like they often serialized their work helped them grow even more.
6. You Won’t Leave In The Middle
This point that I’m making sums up all the arguments I’ve made till now on this topic. What was the main problem we as readers were facing with full-length novels? Due to one or the other reason, we either left in the middle or never started it. All the situations that eventually led to this have been sorted out by serialization. Reading serialized storytelling is preferable to reading normal novels. I would recommend the same to who-so-ever asks as I am into it myself.
Bleak House is one of Charles Dickens’s toughest or, as some like to say, the finest work. It, too, followed Dickens’s traditional serialization, releasing 20 instalments a month. If it was to be published directly as a full-length book, I doubt this many people might have completed reading this work of his.
Conclusion | Reasons To Read Serialized Storytelling
I’ve shared all I know and feel about serialized storytelling with the hope that maybe some of you would agree with me and now start reading serials. As much as I’d like to have you all join me in reading serialized novels, the choice is all yours to make after all. I just want you all to enjoy reading as much as possible.
Also, here’s a little extra treat from my side:
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