Why do small creators only get a few reads?

I get it, some of the Episode Original stories are good, but seriously, there’s a problem.

There are small authors that write the best stories, and they put a lot of thought, time and effort into them, and they get 2 reads. In the meantime, Episode Original stories that were created just for money and with little to no effort literally get millions of reads. It’s frustrating.

I’m not saying that popular stories and authors are bad, but a lot of them could be better. The main point is that small creators don’t get the attention that they deserve.

I think Episode should add a shelf that shows new stories with few reads from small creators. Not small creators that they think will squeeze a lot of gems and passes out of readers, jut small stories in general. Sometimes, there’s a reason that the stories aren’t getting reads, like shabby directing, errors, etc, but a lot of the time, small authors put the most effort into their stories, and they t rush to create new ones as fast as possible because they don’t make money from them.

Smaller stories also usually use less gem choices and less gem per choice (eg. 1 gem choice per story that only uses the lowest amount, 5 gems, and a support the author choice). Nowadays, Episode Original stories have 10 gem choices per chapter (literally no exaggeration) and each choice costs 35 gems. There are even these crappy choices that only affect 1 line of dialogue and are low effort and just an attempt to basically just steal gems and to make the reader feel bad if they don’t choose the gem choice, even if it only influences 1 speech bubble (choices: Flirt with him or snap and tell him to stay away). These are actually really annoying.

If you’re reading this, I highly encourage you to search up random keywords and to click on stories made by unpopular writers. I found a good story just by doing this.

If you want, you can share your opinion and promote your small story (try to make the promotions in a dropdown, because this topic isn’t necessarily an r4r or promotion topic i guess)


I think it’s likely because it’s not as “trendy” as other stories. For example, thriller and horror stories don’t get as much love as romance just because it seems that readers prefer romance over getting their pants scared off or being thrilled (I’m no horror lover either, except for when it comes to the story The Infected and I forgot the other one, dang it! :pensive:)

I think if you put together all the bits that make a classic (but honestly, cliché most times) romance/drama ('cause let’s be honest, most drama stories have more romance than anything), that’s what gets the views.

I’m no author, but I don’t think that the fact that romance is most popular shouldn’t discourage you from writing your story. If you wanna write one where the MC and LI die soon, do it! I might read it, 'cause I want something new! Or at least, something that doesn’t involve love, s&x, or New York! (Sorry, unique stories that take place in NY, but we are long overdue for a lot of good stories that don’t have NY as a setting.)


There are too many variables to count:

  • Author’s popularity and acclaim (social media, Episode Forums, Episode App)
  • If the author promotes their story or not (R4R/G4G, forum posts, trailers, reveals, sneak peeks, social media)
  • Genre (as @Audacious_Writer said, Romance is the most popular genre on Episode)
  • Episode’s read and gem algorithm that effects the story’s ranking in its respective genre category
  • Story quality
  • Cover quality (Almost everyone judges a book by its cover)
  • If Episode hides the story from the trending section because it violates certain guidelines
  • Most Episode readers tend to read Episode Original stories opposed to community stories

There are just too many variables to count. It’s unfortunate. But it’s great that you brought up the question and concern! My advice is to find a small author you enjoy and support their work!

Thank you :smiley:


Long explanation, hope you don’t mind :joy:

  1. Reads are determined by the story’s popularity. Episode does more job at promoting their featured stories because they earn more money by pres-I mean, encourage, readers to buy gems and passes.
    Episode does offer “Hidden Gems” shelves, stories with low read counts, but there are only 9-12 spots per shelve, reader retention (and perhaps gem reads, gem counts taken into consideration) plays a huge role, at the end of the day, Episode only promotes stories that have a large possibility to resonate with the community.

  2. Author’s own popularity directly affects the read count. It’s quite similar to the entertainment field, you gotta blow up before you can write “good” songs/movies.
    The sad reality is, unpopular creators will never receive the emotional and financial support to create better, whereas popular creators continue to dominate the market with their “mainstream” style, regardless if it’s for the better or for the worse. Some cares about their work, but trust me when I say, there are lot more out there that doesn’t.

  3. Budget. Ever wonder how better CGI movies tend to earn more on the box office? The answer is simple: it’s appealing to the eyes of the audience.
    Even though CGI doesn’t exist in Episode, the equivalent of it, assets, do. Backgrounds, overlays, cover arts, splash arts, anything that makes the story stand out from the generic assets most stories use. The more you invest in these, the more chance you’ll attract readers.
    As for authors with no budget, they’ll resort to edits, generic covers, and those are just… Meh.

  4. Themes. You’ll be surprised: even in modern film industries, the protagonist’s gender keeps shifting towards females. Now I’m not against the idea, I’m supporting it even, but that forces the entire industry to make it compulsory to have a “female MC” or a “female hero” in every film, and that leads to stereotypes, bad character development, or just straight up character traits that don’t fit the character naturally in any way.
    But I digress.
    The thing is, the Episode community has some sort of “trend”: pregnancy stories, mafia stories, love triangle stories… If you don’t follow the trend, your story gets overshadowed by the popular themes, hell, some may even view your story as “unorthodox”. Take the horror genre for example: the trending page is exactly the same how I last visited it two years ago (when The Infected was still relevant). Speaks volumes…

If there’s a lesson to take away here: your read count does not determine your story’s quality.

I’m currently writing two stories, one being my solo and another being a collab. If both read counts add up, the number barely touches 1k. On the flip side, I’ve received only positive fanmails, my solo story had gem counts more than read counts, all of my story’s reviewers enjoys the story they’re reviewing, and honestly that’s enough for me to just laugh whenever the read count doesn’t increase because it means sh*t :joy:


I totally agree. That’s why self promoting your book on insta or the forums is so important, sad to say. That’s one way to get more reads. It is really unfair, but the main thing I look out for is good plot, good directing. I think people focus too much on romance too ://

I personally wish they add this function where you can type in a title of the story or name of a creator in a search bar and all stories with that word or the story you’re specifically looking for immediately pops out, that’s a lifesaver. I know they’re plenty of stories you can scroll through but it takes really long to find a book, especially if it’s not very popular. The only way I’ve found is to go through r4r threads or promote your book threads and save the links/bookmark them for future.

So yeah, I get what you’re saying, it’s not fair. Probably because after the updates you have to read episode original stories to unlock other community stories. It’s very hard to find stories that aren’t very popular or have tons of reads since there are tons of stories and they don’t always list all. Another reason might be because episode original stories are the first stories, they have lots of choices and great directing and they’re just romance so people want to read it? (Maybe) But I do know that they focus a lot on them. They keep promoting them and giving you free passes to read those stories or whatever and thats how people end up reading a lot of them. And you get shards or whatever good stuff from reading featured stories too… which helps you get gems, and gems are hard to get and there are lots of gem choices so… yeah. There are many reasons, these are just a few, but mainly because Episode doesn’t show much stories with less reads and they’re just less well-known, not that people don’t like the story. It’s unfair, yes, but that’s how life works.

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I totally agree.
I have been writing for months and got 200 reads (out of 10 chapters!!!)