Will Kindle's Free Samples Change the Structures of Plots?

Search-engine optimization reshaped the craft of a good headline. Will Amazon's book promotions have a similar effect on novels?

Full piece at The Atlantic


This doesn't sound a new concept. The Victorian novelist Charles Dickens wrote in this manner for newspapers.

So what is the point of pointing out that the concept might not have happened first with the Kindle?

I assume you are referring to the history of serialized fiction.

See: Serialized Fiction in the Victorian Era

The serialized fiction of the Victorian era ended almost 100 years ago. Interesting to see that we might be switching back to a 100 year old publishing pattern.

Serialized fiction did not end almost 100 years ago. Within the science fiction/fantasy community, at least, it's been going on ever since--perhaps not as a dominant form, but significant.

I know for 100% certain this is true because i read the three "major" print sf/f magazines. One of them, Analog, explicitly runs serialized novels (and always has, "always" in this case being through most of the 20th century). The other two don't generally offer serials as such--but they publish loads of novellas, novelettes and short stories that are, in fact, related and may either have been written as portions of a novel or may later be combined into a novel.

The latter is certainly honorable within the field: That's how Isaac Asimov's Foundation Trilogy came about, as a series of novelettes that he later combined into novels.

No direct relationship to the original item. Just FYI.

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