Writers: Do You Post Your Unpublished Books Online?

Photo by Jakub Krechowicz

Some writers are posting excerpts of chapters or their entire book online. While posting excerpts isn’t a bad idea, you may want to rethink posting your entire book on the internet. Why? Publishers may ‘frown’ upon this because they want to be the first ones to read your book.

If you attend a writer’s workshop, the instructor may tell you to remove your book from the internet. One reason could be due to copyright issues. If you’re super paranoid that someone will steal your ideas or copy your entire book, you may want to remove it right now. Another reason to consider taking your book off of the internet is a publisher will want to be the first one to read your book. If your book is already available for the public to see, what’s the point of the agent or publisher looking at it?

Writers post their partial or completed books online for different reasons. If you want feedback on your novel, join a writer’s group that offers comprehensive reviews. Having your writing critiqued is a great way to tighten up the plot, find those pesky grammar and punctuation errors, and find out if your story draws people into it. You can join as many groups as you want. Make sure you feel comfortable with the people and receive constructive feedback.

Posting your partial or completed book online could open you up to all sorts of negative chatter. Some writers receive this from their family and friends. Do you really want it from the general public? You may read comments such as, “…your writing sucks, you call yourself a writer, or get a real job.” If you have great self-esteem and self-confidence then these comments will roll off of you. However, it you haven’t developed your self-confidence, these words can hit your worse than a punch to the gut! Think about this before you post your book online.

Writers, it’s up to you whether or not you post your partial or completed book online. If you feel confident in your work and want readers to read it now then go ahead and post online. If you have a voice in the back of your head that’s questioning whether or not to do this, listen to your gut instinct that may tell you it’s not a good idea. You could always write to your favorite writer and ask his or her opinion on this subject. Good luck!


What’s your reason for posting your unfinished book online? Share.