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The Rise of Fast Fiction and its Effect on the Publishing Industry

With the growing popularity of platforms like TikTok, micro-communities like BookTok are influencing the reading/publishing industry. A recent example of this is Rebecca Yarros’ ‘Fourth Wing’ which released in April 2023. The sequel to this, Iron Flame, was released in November 2023. This is an unusually short time line for traditionally published work and has lead to some quality issues. A vast amount of readers have reported issues with quality in terms of printing (i.e. whole chapters missing, headers missing, etc) but also in terms of writing (lack of editing or depth in plot).

Is the publishing industry changing? Is it attempting to mimic the quick release model of indie authors in order to exploit the market and make more money?

  • Effect, not affect. – T. Palomino 6 months ago
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  • Cool topic! I've noticed this in genres I read a lot as well. Since you bring up quality issues, perhaps the article could go into ways of solving these issues without "fast fiction" becoming as difficult to break into as traditional book publishing? As in, maybe the standards need to be tightened or watched more closely, but that looks different than how you'd monitor or tighten standards for a traditional novel. – Stephanie M. 6 months ago
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  • I saw a tik Tok referencing this same idea and the effect that it is having on the publishing industry as well. Books are being produced more quickly than ever and overflowing the market. This practice is also more prevalent in certain genres. The concern is that instead of making new, meaningful contributions to literature (not that every book has to be serious or educational), popular tropes are being replicated for the wrong reasons. Instead of recognizing that the first author wrote the trope well, these ideas are being reproduced multiple times at a lesser quality. – AmyKryvenchuk 5 months ago
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  • Although I'm not a reader of internet literature myself, I've noticed that internet authors who self-publish novels by instalments have attracted large readerships. The chapters appear online periodically and have many followers. This reflects the changing landscape of reading and writing practices under the influence of technology. However, one can also say this is nothing new. Weren't many of the great novels in the 19th and 20th centuries originally published in newspapers by instalments also, chapter by chapter? In this sense, this could be seen as a revival of an old fashion. It would be interesting to do a comparative study. – Lydia Gore-Jones 2 months ago
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