So what’s the widget, you may ask? Put it simply, it’s a link to a novel I’m working on, uploaded onto a platform that will allow the public to read what I have so far and community critique. Thanks to the brilliant minds behind Pandamian.
They are rather similar to Smashwords, but their focus is very much on the pre-final manuscript stage, rather than an all-out e-Book publishing platform. Thus, it’s pretty much a three-pronged benefit (for me, at least).
Benefit #1: It doesn’t have to be your final draft
Pandamian was developed to provide a platform for writers to put their work up for public reading and critique. This automatically means that whatever that goes up does not necessarily need to be of best-seller or ready-to-publish standard. At least not straight out.
It encourages first drafts, second drafts, multiple drafts, drafts for writers and creators to edit, change, and develop for public viewing. So there’s no pressure for you to write the best possible thing in the best possible way before you even think of uploading something. You can just edit as you go along.
*Sidenote: Pandamian also serves as a back-up option for people participating in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and is a major supporter of NaNoWriMo Singapore.
Benefit #2: Chapter-by-Chapter uploads & comments
Like the first benefit, you are not pressured to finish your entire project before uploading anything online. You just upload as you go along.
Another good thing about Chapter-by-Chapter uploads is that it allows the audience to absorb more and be more focused. Rather than be overwhelmed by a whole barrage of things to read, little capsules of the story stay better in the little pockets of your mind.
This also means that comments can be given on each chapter so you’ll know what went wrong/ right and where. No more flipping or scrolling like crazy to pinpoint something that may not be entirely right.
Benefit #3: Motivation for completion
This is a personal benefit and I believe it will be one for many writers or creative people in time.
I once read that in a time where many things have been created, done, and redone, a piece that’s “done” is better than a piece that’s “good but incomplete”. It’s easier to edit a “bad page” than a “blank page”. You get my drift.
Thus, when I got my Pandamian account, I found regular uploads of the chapters (I upload every Friday), made sure I was working to produce more work. This will probably go on until the entire project is done.
I call this a great benefit, especially when some of us creative people cannot bear to complete something when there’s this mistake or disturbing paragraph, chapter, or character that just irks us. This need to upload weekly pushes me to carry on, leaving the draft to rest before working it again.
After all, the dough has to have the chance to rest and rise before you could work it again, right?
Note: I use the Free version of WordPress, so I can’t really alter HTML and stuff at will. While I did attempt to place the above widget in my sidebar, it did come out a little weird. So I just stored it as a link under my “Links” page, so named, “Work-in-Progress”.