I’m going to make a point of trying to include answers to frequently asked questions here.

Q1: [Question pertaining to how something works in-setting], [Question that pertains to a future event in the story, whether something will happen or not], [Will the story stay this dark?], etc.

A1:  I make a point of not answering questions like these, because I don’t want to spoil anything (and something doesn’t happen is still a spoiler, because it narrows down possibilities). Wait for future updates, read on, infer from the text.

Q2:  Will there be an ebook version?

A2: I hope to self publish and sell some somewhere down the road.  Going to finish the story first and edit things as thoroughly as possible first.

Q2a:  Can I have an ebook version for free?  I’d like to read offline.

A2a:  I have some, but I’d rather not distribute them.  There’s unethical sorts who are taking others’ work and claiming it as their own (often with a title/name change) and I’d rather not make it easier for them.  I know there’s a few fanmade ebook versions circulating, I accept that it’ll happen, but I don’t want to help the process along.

I’m hoping to get a polished version out at some point.  Should you be interested, send me an email at Wildbowpig [at] gmail [dot] com with the subject line ‘WormPublishNews’.  I’ll mass-email everyone on that list when the time comes, to let them know about release.  (For all worm news, use the subject line ‘WormNews’.)

Q3:  Fanart.  Fanfics.  You okay with it?

A3: I am definitely okay with it, love it, but I’d ask that you please mention where the work in question comes from (ie. link to this site) & mention that you don’t claim the characters/setting/ideas of Worm as your own.

Q4:  What’s the Missing Interlude?  What happened?

A4:  It’s an interlude I tried to write while badly distracted, after long & busy weeks filled with family events.  A crew of 6-10 people were tearing up/replacing my kitchen & bedroom floors; there was no place to write where I’d be close enough to answer questions but far enough away to have some peace.  On the best of days, it’s hard to be objective enough to judge if a chapter will be loved or loathed.  I’ve braced myself for hate while waiting for a response to some chapters, only to find them my best-received.  To top it off, on any day I’m tired, there’s inevitably little details I’m forced to gloss over in the process of getting a chapter up.  Research I don’t do, or places where I expect readers to fill in the blanks.

This interlude, taking place after the Echidna arc, featured a Tattletale clone who’d slipped through the cracks, crossed paths with a buried Shatterbird and Vista, only to escape and join Weld’s new team.  I got past the point of no return as far as writing it, I wound up putting it up despite my doubts and braced myself for the response to one or two of those points where I didn’t quite cover all the bases.  Except there were more than a few of those iffy moments.  The reader response only helped me realize that I wasn’t happy with it, and I ultimately took it down.  The problems:

  • The origin of the character was poorly done.  It made sense in-setting, but to readers, it took place over two offscreen moments.
  • The introduction of the character was unnecessary.  It didn’t serve the story.
  • The tone of the story suffered for her introduction.  Basically a gut punch at a time when things should have been letting up/winding down.
  • The character wasn’t in line with the setting as laid out.  Her behavior as compared to other clones was patient.
  • The scenario the character was worked into was both forced and unbelievable:her joining the Irregulars, them not questioning the introduction of an amnesiac after anti-Stranger measures were established midway through arc 18, her being immediately given a management position.

It didn’t make sense.  It’s no longer canon, but I expect the story will continue to hint that the events besides the introduction of this ill-conceived villain were more or less accurate.

There’s only been one similar incident since I began Worm: one chapter (7.9) was a little too frantic and description heavy.  I pulled an all-nighter to rewrite it before the remainder of my readers woke up in the morning and saw it, joking that it was canon.  (See 8.8 for why)

Q5:  Worm ends!?  When!?

A5:  The last update is already up!  Damn!

Q5a: What’s next?

See here for a blog post on my author blog regarding that.  I talk about starting the works I’m going to write next, editing Worm for publication and the sequel, as well as ways to subscribe to news/publication info/sequel info.

Q5b:  Why are you waiting to write more Worm?

A5b:  I’m still a novice author, and knowing my predilections, I think I’d get burned out very easily if I let myself get shoehorned into one genre.  I sort of want to flex my ability, see my limits, allow myself to stumble while I can afford to, and explore other styles or approaches.

I’ve seen other works, which I think it’d be crass to name, where the author has tried to extend things too far.  There comes a point where things become predictable, or characters can’t change without the story moving towards an ending, which makes things start to spin in place.

I believe stories need beginnings and endings or they lose their innate momentum.  Stopping one only to restart it (or an extension of it) right away doesn’t allow for a true genesis or finale.  I knew right from the outset that Worm was going to have an ending, and I feel that the readers deserve a sequel that’s had a few years to steep in the author’s mind.

112 thoughts on “F.A.Q.

        • Nope, just wanted to verify. Added it to fanfiction tab.

          Rather enjoyed it, to be honest. Powers were pretty good (if any complaints, they’re a little too traditional and maybe a little too ‘well fit’ for the locale), I like the building setup. A little bit of confusion in terms of the names (around chapter 6 or 9 or something) where I wasn’t clear on who Canberra was (name presently escapes me). Would say it’s about 90-95% accurate in terms of how things fit into the Wormverse, and can’t fault you on the other 5-10% because I don’t think it’s stuff I’ve fully divulged.

          Oh, and I should note I don’t tend to laugh at stuff, but I laughed at the chapter where James gets the egg stuck on his arm. “I’m THAT guy.”

  1. Thanks, glad you liked it!

    Will try to get in at least 1-2 updates a week, but time is a bit crunchy right now. New baby, job, etc. You’ve inspired me, Wildbow! I’ll take this muse as far as she’ll let me drive her…


    * Missing period after “Fanfics” in Q3.
    * Missing word in A4: “I got past the point of no return as far as writing it, I wound up putting it up despite my doubts and braced myself for the response to one or two of those points where I didn’t quite cover all the .”

  3. Not sure where else to leave this, and this seemed the most suitable place. How do we go about subscribing this?

    • Leave a comment, and on the bottom of it, check the box saying notify me of new posts via email. Then just confirm it in your email,

  4. I read this pretty much from the start to today’s post non-stop over the last few days.

    What a cliffhanger to finish at. Now I need to wait for the normal updates like everyone else

    But it has been great. Thank you.

    Now I wondering about Taylor’s new ability to visualize teammates and channel them. That should be interesting once it goes beyond banging on doors.

  5. If, or when, you do a print edition, please include some kind of ebook version with it. You may even make it more expensive for that, or offer two editions, one pure paper, one paper & electrons with 20% higher price.

      • Nnnno, actually that’d be counter-productive, I think. One of the biggest drawbacks in my opinion in the market are the ridiculous prices for ebooks compared to printed books. Look at it this way: You have little extra work for an electronic edition, if you already got the editing and what not done for the paper edition. A lot of the cost can subsequently be saved – shipping, printing, material, etc. (I’d need to talk to my publisher friend to know what else, but that’s what I thought of the top of my head and beside the point, anyway)
        That leaves you with less than half the price for the print edition, if I estimate correctly. So you can actually make more profit per electronic unit sold than per paper unit.
        Furthermore, and here is my very stubborn opinion: by now we’re somewhat modern, yet the industry is too buggerheaded to see reason to include even the option (!) to buy electronic versions at a reasonable price unless they’re bestsellers, and even then it’s up the stars.
        To give you an example: After watching Game of Thrones’ 1st season I wanted to continue, and the easiest way was to buy the books. The fastest to buy ebooks. What stumped me: The electronic version was the same price as the printed one. It was not included, mind you, I would have needed to buy both to get it.
        To be honest, this was the German version in both cases, so I basically gave them the finger and bought the English version of the same(!) marketplace for 1/8 of the price. You see the problem? Might be a local one, I can see that, but as far as I know it’s still somewhat endemic to the books industry in general.

        Sorry for the rant…

        Sorry for breaking my example further down:
        First 5 volumes, paperback, English: 26 EUR
        First 5 volumes, broken in 2 each, paperback, German: 152 EUR
        First 4 volumes, ebook, English: 17 to 22 EUR
        First 4 volumes, broken in 2 each, 96 to 104 EUR
        See? If I wanted to buy it in German, about 250 EUR; English about 50 EUR. If we discard the overinflated difference in price in general (to avoid another rant), the ebook edition is still mostly 3/4 of the print edition…

        • I’m all for print, and would definitely buy the books if you could ever get them published. Good luck with that.

          Funny story: on the latest episode of Me Failing To Persuade People To Try Worm, I tried to get my brother to read it. Probably go into more details about it in the regular comment section, so we can all laugh at those ignorant of the existence of this serial and the general stupidity of my brother, but anyway, I spent about ten minutes trying to sell it to him. See, he read the first chapter, classified it as teen angst, and won’t read another page. So, at the end of my monologue, he asks, “So, this is a real book?”

          Dumbfounded me: “YES.”

          “And it’s going to be published? In print?”

          “The author is going to publish it as an ebook, and is working on the print thing.”

          “Maybe I’ll try it.”

          …there are no words. Except these: By virtue of my brother, a published story will be, without exception, more worthy of being read than an unpublished one. How close minded can you be?

          • In his defense, a larger fraction of published stories are worth reading than of unpublished stories. Given that you as much as said it would be a self-published thing, though, that’s a terrible defense.

          • Agreed. Have to say, I never really appreciated published stories until I found fanfiction, and discovered what exactly can come from people. The grammar alone can make me put it down.

            Though, I guess I wasn’t that clear on something. When he asked if it was a real book, he was also asking if it as manga.

  6. Can I erm vote for

    Peer (High Fantasy)

    You have created an unforgettable superhero setting, I’m Interested In what you do with a High fantasy Setting

    You say you will release sample chapters yes? Will reader response possibly push you towards one or the other?

    I Can’t wait🙂

    Well I can, If worm continues to be at its great standard.😛

  7. I have a question on the possible successor works to Worm.

    You mentioned that your Modern Supernatural works are rather connected to each other. Are the works of Pact, Rats, and Twin the same setting or separate settings that happen to fit the descriptor of Modern Supernatural/Fantasy? Is Over, the Supernatural Thriller, part of these settings or not?

    Obviously if this would be at all spoiler territory feel free to say you are not answering comments along this line of questioning.

    • Pact, Rats and Twin are part of the same setting. Over is not.

      I may need to update the list. Ran ‘Form’ (renamed to Body) past my writer’s circle and am having second thoughts.

      May add a horror work, though horror is hard to serialize.

      • Thank you.

        Not going to ask further questions, so the community can be surprised down the line when we reach the point where the works become more than speculation.

  8. This might be a really dense question to ask, but I still do not yet understand why the story is called Worm. (I’m at the end of the Extermination arc, FYI😉

    • Gavin Williams touches on some of the underlying ideas in his review here.

      The review is pretty spoiler-free, as it was originally posted around the time the Extermination arc was finishing.

  9. Wildbow, if I may. Where/When would be a good idea to ask questions about the various powers (I’m currently reading through Interlude 15db3)?

    (If here’s ok)

    Among other things, I’d like to know how the # rating corresponds with the perceived power. Examples of what would constitute a 1,5, and 10 for a few of the different categories would be a wonderful help with understanding the system.

  10. Wow, this has been an amazing read, just about caught up after about a week or so of constant reading. Posting just to make sure I get a notification when new chapters go up!

  11. I have to admit I found this on Spacebattles, and I’ve loved every second of it. I am at chapter 26 and am looking forward to catching up. The thought of Worm ending does make me a bit unhappy, I always am a bit sad whenever a really great story comes to an end. So the mentioning of a Worm sequel is pretty freakin boss. I also look forward to what ever your next project is even as I anticipate the Worm sequel. So really thank you for all your hard work, I appreciate it.

  12. Really glad I stumbled upon Worm, I got up to 10.5 in the past two days and I have to say it’s one of the best fiction stories I’ve read online. Also, probably the first story in the superhero genre category that’s caught my interest. So now I’m kind of searching other for others that I may have missed. So yea, I just think Worm is extremely awesome and I can’t wait to read more.

  13. Out of curiosity, are there any Dramatic Reading/Audiobook efforts being done in regards to this by fans? I have a friend who is dyslexic and he has a hard time reading at length, but I think he might enjoy the story quite a bit.

    • No plans as far as audiobooks go. I’m hard of hearing, so it’s difficult for me to gauge quality and/or handle it myself.

      Things may happen with publication, though, so stay tuned?

      • I hope they ran this by Wildbow before beginning the project… Otherwise it would be copyright infringement. It seems to be an awsome project though😀

      • I really hope they ran this by Wildbow, since it would otherwise by copyright infringement. Even the front page says “We are in no way affiliated with J.C. McCrae (Wildbow) and we have no rights to the source material. ” That’s not a good way to go about a project like this. The project seems like an awesome idea though, but I’d strongly advise them to contact Wildbow as soon as possible to get the greenlight. This is not a public domain deal after all and they’re not Librivox, or whatever they are called.

        Stay creative,
        – Lukas

        • We did. He pointed out his policy on derivative works, which is basically “don’t claim ownership, don’t take money, cite him as the author, and generally don’t make things difficult for him and he won’t tell you not to, but he can’t officially say yes because it would potentially cause issues with future publishing deals.” This is why we cite him as much as we possibly can while also mentioning that it is a fan project, in addition to linking directly to his site on every chapter. Also, I’ve been very strictly following the “no money” policy. There are no ads in the podcast or on the site and we have a “Donate to the Author” link in the main menu that routes directly to Wildbow’s donation page. Ultimately this is Wildbow’s work, so if he ever seriously wanted us to stop I would shut it down without another word, although (pending an official audiobook) I really hope he doesn’t since this serves as another means of people discovering the truly epic work that is Worm – which is really all we wanted in the first place.

          • Seems like my comment, for whatever reason, got posted twice, and I accidentally posted a shorter version of my comment above. Can anyone delete those other ones for me? I also would have worded my comment differently if I was more awake, but I was tired. What I meant to say is that it is on thin ice in terms of legality. But great to hear that you’ve got all sorted out. I hope that Wildbow and Worm can gain some new readers via your project🙂

            • Same here. I personally know of at least a handful that steamed through the rest of the text after catching up with the audiobook🙂

              Also there is a 3rd copy of your post much farther down the page. Your browser must have derped hard.

  14. If you were worried about funding for the novel you could try looking into a site called Kickstarter that can help projects via crowdsourcing. I participated in the Exalted kickstarter which raised $60,000 in the first 18 minutes. While it would be really cool to simply have one hardcopy, as Worm is already longer than the entire Harry Potter series, so separate volumes might be more practical.

    • I would like to second this motion. I’m willing to bet that there are more than enough Worm fans out there to fund production of a hard copy set, even the ones that have never really donated in the past. I have seen a number of Kickstarter projects hit their goal and just keep sky-rocketing, which I’m sure would happen with Worm as well. If you decide to go this route I’d love to see a main page link so I can donate. Though I also am curious how many volumes you would end up releasing it into, I imagine it will be kind of difficult to draw lines anywhere to move to a new book with the story flowing so seamlessly. If anyone can do it I’m sure you can Wildbow, we have faith!

  15. You wouldn’t by any chance know why I can’t save the pages? I thought maybe you opposed copying your work so vehemently you somehow disabled downloading it but since you aren’t spitting venom over the question of ebooks… See, my only conection to internet is through my tablet and smartphone – usually I go to the wi-fi hot spot, download some reading material and go home to read it, but since I can’t do so with Worm (neither device managed to download anything from https://parahumans.wordpress.com ) I had to read it on my phone using that money-eating phone internet (It’s called 3g, I think…?). I reached arc 11 and already used up monthly fee >.< …help? Please?

    …not with the money, no, with downloading🙂

  16. I haven’t found any reference on this site to your name (your secret identity). If I may ask, why are you publishing Worm anonymously? (Or am I just a poor looker?)

    • I’m currently on my first read, and came to the FAQs for something else. (How to search re: a character detail w/out getting 10 pages of results, newest first. Still stumped. Moving on … )

      I see Wildbow hasn’t noticed your unanswered Q, so I’ll try to help in case you, or other readers, are still wondering (and look here). I have sympathy for the ‘search impaired’ (see para 1, above).

      He’s not Anon; it’s mentioned several places (early comments & such) but now I’ve said that, I can’t put my finger, er, cursor on one, of course. I did not imagine that info, dangit!

      But here’s the fun way:
      Over doing this serial in several years, he’s gotten such a fanbase that you can now Google “Wildbow” OR “Worm” and get lots of good stuff on the first page! Or try TVTropes — they LOVE his work! (me, too!) 😉

      I’m hoping his search metrics are getting attention at publishing houses. Or literary agencies. They should!

    • So many months later and someone answers your question for real. I’ve found his name in an answer to a question about translating worm.
      It’s a hell of a lot easier and better for my peace of mind if you don’t earn money/solicit money for the translation/fanfiction and if you add a nice clear header/line/mark/page that says something like, “This is purely a fan project and I/we lay no claim to the ideas, characters, or story. The real author is J.C. McCrae, aka ‘Wildbow’, and the original version can be found

  17. Can we find the Missing Interlude somewhere? I arrived too late to get it, but reading the comments section on this reread made me very curious…

  18. Kind of a specific question, but my friends and I went to talk about Worm after reading and went from friendly stumbling at the different pronunciation of names to outright fighting about it. As most of the supers names are defined words in dictionaries, I’ll assume that they take the pronunciation of the word itself. The one we’re arguing about mostly, oddly enough, is Dinah. Any help on this will calm the storm of fists between us and leave on person extremely sore in the ego. How do you imagine Dinah’s name would be said as you were writing?

  19. I’m not sure if this has been commented already, and I’m *fairly* sure this isn’t the right place, but I couldn’t find anywhere else to comment. First, I want to congratulate you on this fantastic story, and especially on the degree of representation it has. Authors should strive to be more like this.

    That said, there was one related issue I noticed, regarding race, namely that whenever a character was not-white, you’d describe them as such, but when they *are* white, you neglect to describe their race. Everyone is white unless otherwise stated – with the exception of the parts that take place in, for example, China, where you drop completely racial parts of the description -, and indeed at times the description goes “darker skin” as if “clear skin” was the standard, and I feel like you should dedicate as much to describing race when it comes to white characters as you do when it comes to people of colour. It could be something as minor as removing the standard (a character doesn’t have “darker” skin, unless they’re being directly compared to someone who had clear skin) and adding the “white” adjective where appropriate.

    I apologise if this is the wrong place to say this, as I do not know how to contact you otherwise. Cheers.

    • This came up before, and fans debated it in the chatroom and such – someone went through the story and found I used the term ‘pale’ or something in that vein as often as I used ‘darker skin’ or anything like that.

      Many of the characters who are explicitly described in the terms you note above don’t fall into a neat category – Krouse is of mixed descent, WagTheDog is half black and half white – Taylor doesn’t know the full story, she can’t/doesn’t slot them into a specific category, so she simply describes them as they are, including the skin color in the gamut of stuff (Krouse’s hook nose & longer hair, Wag’s mismatched eyes). With the unreliable narrator, Taylor can’t say “Trickster is half Middle-Eastern and half Caucasian”.

      I think going out of the way to highlight every character who’s Caucasian would stand out and feel weird. Taylor’s voice is such that she notes a few key details about a person, but she doesn’t really pay attention to race beyond the point that it’s possibly among the one of two to five obvious traits about their appearance that help her remember who they are and what they look like. Noting that they’re white wouldn’t fit with this because it’s not a memorable detail when more than half of Brockton Bay is white.

  20. Hello, I have a question, I don’t think it has been answered.
    How do you feel about translations of your work? I loved the series and have been sharing it with friends for a while now, however, it will be awesome if it becomes available in other languages. There are already some friends who have shown interest in beginning translation but not without your approval and your comments on it.
    My biggest issue is… when work is translated to a language that the author has no knowledge of, how are things kept… balanced and fair? You can drop me an e-mail if you prefer to keep this conversation private, my e-mail is in the details of my comment.

    • This is tough, because it opens a can of worms. The rights to a work are very easily misinterpreted. If I say “Yes, go translate!” then someone could take that as implicit permission to go, translate my story and sell it in Russian bookstores or as an ebook or something. It becomes a problem, too, if I get a deal to do a TV show or a contract with a publisher for hundreds of thousands of dollars, and then they do a simple internet search and they say, “We can’t move forward with this, because it’s not clear where the intellectual property stands”. You know what I mean? If they have to spend weeks or months clarifying that I’m the real author and resolving petty legal disputes, they might just drop me entirely.

      So I’ll simply say that it’s very much the same as Fanfiction. It’s not worth my time and effort to go after readers who are doing something relatively harmless – so I’ll say it’s (fanfiction/translation) not necessarily a bad thing, and you won’t earn my displeasure by doing something in that vein… provided it stays harmless.

      It stays harmless so long as you’re not making money off my work, which is one thing that raises red flags, and so long as the authorship isn’t in question (ie. people don’t have to spend days/weeks deciphering whether I wrote it or stole the idea from [fanfiction author/translator].

      It’s a hell of a lot easier and better for my peace of mind if you don’t earn money/solicit money for the translation/fanfiction and if you add a nice clear header/line/mark/page that says something like, “This is purely a fan project and I/we lay no claim to the ideas, characters, or story. The real author is J.C. McCrae, aka ‘Wildbow’, and the original version can be found at http://www.parahumans.wordpress.com .”

      Does that make sense?

      • Perfect. This was exactly what I had in mind, when I said that I am unsure how it is as an issue.

        What you said is a very good explanation and no, I have no intention to profit in any way of your work… I just know that if it is published there are very little chances in my country (I am Bulgarian, google that if you have no idea where that is, don’t worry, it is so for most people) and I really, really like the story.🙂

      • Oh, no edit here, damn it. I have a solution for the issue… we can translate and send you the translated chapters… then you can upload them wherever you choose, so you have the only translation?

        • Doing that means mucking up the rights, much as I’d be doing so if I took a fan’s idea.

          Someone says, “Hey, Wildbow, what if for the sequel, you told a story about Defiant and Dragon’s cyborg kid?” – I reply, “Great idea!” and write the sequel.

          The sequel makes a modest amount of money, and then the reader pipes up saying, “Hey, that’s my idea! That’s borderline plagiarism, and I demand a share of the profits.” Cue years of issues and court battles, and me maybe having to give up those profits.

          With Translation/Audiobook/Fanfics/Adaptations, you run into the same issues. The creation is technically the intellectual property of the individual who brought it into the world, even if it’s based on the work, and sharing in the rights could be argued to be implied in my agreement.

          Long story short, I can’t give tacit permission or claim ownership without jumping through a lot of hoops. Accepting the work and distributing it would be giving permission, in a roundabout way.

          So I’m not going to give permission to go ahead and do this, but I’m not going to make trouble if you do, provided it stays kosher and you don’t make it the sort of thing that could get messy.

          • Ok, so… I am NOT going to proceed further with it, because it sounds like waay too much trouble for you.🙂 I just hope it reaches us at some point when you publish it officially.🙂 All the best!

      • Hey, sorry for the lateness of this post. I just wanted to point out that any translations would be derivative of the original work. From a copyright perspective in the United States and any nation that is a Berne Convention signatory, the efforts of others to translate your work automatically becomes your property. Anyone translating your work is essentially creating new IP owned by you, even if you know nothing about it.

        The kind of ‘implied permission’ you’re worried about here would do nothing except expand your readership and make breaking into foreign-language markets easier. Imagine you want to publish a version of Worm, and people have already translated half of it into a particular language. You, or anyone you assign your rights to by contract, may use that fan translation at will and without penalty (assuming USA or Berne signatory, which covers Russia, for example). So a foreign publisher would have less work to do actually producing the product, and you could probably usurp the market position of pirated content in any language by commissioning some official artwork for various scenes throughout the story and including it in the official version.

        Let me know if you need me to explain any part of the above in detail. I’m reading through Worm for the first time right now, up to Colony.

    • I have considered this myself because translation would be necessary to reach most of the reading populace in my country, however I got stuck with a nasty problem – wildbow loves dancing with English, hiding figurative behind literal and vice versa.
      His recent works are consistently four letters long titles with several meanings that all apply (well, we only got glances at some of them, but I have little doubts it will be so). There’s always the choice to leave them untranslated and add a complete thesaurus page as a preface, but the titles aren’t the only ones. Arc/chapter names can hint at an impending twist while also being indicative of expected developments.
      Once readers noticed the trend, they started overanalysing each one to predict things with varied amounts of success (I can totally see wildbow checking some of those comments with tented fingers and a large grin, personally).

      Now, I have absolutely no idea about Bulgarian’s specifics, but relying on a single language that much will always suffer the translation. Do you focus on the verbal or nominal meaning of a title ? Literal or figurative ? If you don’t have an exact equivalent in the other tongue you will add bias to the original wordplay, making things either disconnected or too obvious.

      Before issues regarding copyrights and other legal matters, I can’t see Worm being translated in a fashion that keeps it intact, and that’s a dealbreaker for me. My friends won’t read it, but they wouldn’t really read the same story if it was translated anyway, so…

      • To be honest, as far as my language goes… it gives a lot of opportunity because it is a bit different than English, it is Cyrillic in its nature, which means a lot of complex, short words which add layers to the whole thing.

        But yes, good questions and the aspect of the word plays and puns are a valid point.🙂

  21. Q2A: there are many many ways to read the whole story offline if you just look around and think about it a bit. You can even make your own ebook out of it if you’re so inclined. However, i would not suggest trying to sell that ebook as the entire interwebz may decide to turn your present box and any other box you use in the future into an expensive smoking paperweight. Srsly, we don’t like that crap ok?

    • To Ye Author: I’m on Teneral e.2 now so i might actually get to sleep soon……srsly……it’s been weeks of this story…….perhaps on your next book you could attempt to channel Robert Jordan just a tad less? I’ve been tempted to forgo sex just to read more…….

  22. Sorry, not sure of a proper place to contact you, but just wanted to thank you for your review it’s very helpful and I am currently trying to take your advice. I’m not asking you to change your review or re-read anything, just letting you know that it was enough to give me the push I needed to finally go back and try to fix up my story.

  23. Since there are no forums i thought I’d post my two cents here. I like the story, i really do, but the lack of realism in all the fights made me stop reading at volume 6. It seems extremely silly that everyone is not running around with guns to supplement their powers. Its like the story was supposedly to be gritty but ended up as YA, where no one ever dies.

    Whats everyone’s deal with non-lethal this and non-lethal that. The supposed “villains” seem so scared of killing someone, and the heroes throw captured “villains” in an easy to escape jail so that they can break out again and cause more havoc. The story cites politics for the reason the heroes never use lethal force, which in itself is a silly excuse. Look at the TV with all its talk about military and all the deaths in war and gang violence. Using lethal force against criminals in a fight is readily accepted by society, more so I imagine in a world where people have destructive powers.

    The “villains” are also scared to use lethal force, even more so than the heroes it seems at times. It hardly seems realistic, practical or even logical. Also as a side note the amount of money for these jobs seems to be pretty much chump change. 5 grand each for robbing a bank? Who would even do that, even the quarter million later on is pathetically small for jobs like this, id expect at least a million a piece or something.

    All in all the fights aren’t realistic, take too long, and have some weird affinity for avoiding any lethal force in what is effectively all out war in Gotham city. Writing is fine, as is voice, but if your going to make a series about combat, you’ve gotta have some skin in the game or it just gets boring. I hear it gets darker the later it goes on but that doesn’t necessarily mean more realistic, i guess people just never die in superhero stories.

    • I don’t want to spoil anything, so I won’t be specific, but later in the story the motivations for avoiding killing are made clear and the consequences are shown to be very dire.

  24. You should already be selling (or giving away) at least two ebook volumes at 40k or 60k words per, depending on where the bank heist happens (at the end of volume 1).

  25. Hi! I’m from Russia. I’m at volume 11 now and have the need of at least trying to translate it in Russian for more people being able to read this awesome web series. What do you think of this idea of mine? It make take a while, but I’m excited to try.

  26. I got turned on to the Worm story by a comment for a webcomic. Coming here and reading these past two weeks has been an experience.
    From the bullied victim’s view of the system taking me back to highschool. To wanting to reach into the screen and hug Taylor on many occasions. I cried at her successes, and whimpered with tears through the epilogues.
    I wish I could say more but it would be too specific. I hope to find this in hardback some day and find many sequels.

  27. Re-rereading the story. (Yes I think it is that good) I find one thing wrong. Not in the writing, but in the modern philosophy. Taylor asks if the villians fixing things up and running things is so bad? Response is that it would set humanity back 3000 years. Warlords ruling subjects and holding armies and marrying among themselves. The irony that comes to me is that it is what we still have.
    The U.S. armed forces protect the country from foreign invasion and are beholden to our elected officials. Officials that do not carry titles like baron, count, or duke. We call them congressman, governor, and senator. They are in family dynasties that can show their political control for generations. And if the voice of the people says we want someone in office gone? It can’t happen unless another dynasty or usurper is available to step in on the behalf of the people. IE go for a popular revolt.
    I wish I could call this an error in the writing. Sadly I think the thought process of denial of the simple title shift is all to true.

  28. Hey I just started reading in February I’m on chapter 10. Loving it so far. I have a question about the world. Me and my friends play role playing games ( Dnd, Fate, Empire OPT, etc) and I was thinking of doing one set in this world. I’m going to tell them lil bit about the universe. Trigger events, endbringers, the different kinds of capes, and powers can only affect organic or inorganic things. If anything else comes to mind let me know. A lot of potential for fun trouble, Thanks Wildbow and make an audio book.🙂

      • Cool, me and my friends are playing the Drsden Rpg right now which is fun I thought It might adapt well to this. If you need anyone to do a play test I got a good group. I’ll be plugging away on your story. If there’s anyway I can help let me know. Thanks again.

        • I really hope they ran this by Wildbow, since it would otherwise by copyright infringement. Even the front page says “We are in no way affiliated with J.C. McCrae (Wildbow) and we have no rights to the source material. ” That’s not a good way to go about a project like this. The project seems like an awesome idea though, but I’d strongly advise them to contact Wildbow as soon as possible to get the greenlight. This is not a public domain deal after all and they’re not Librivox, or whatever they are called.

          Stay creative,
          – Lukas

  29. I want to know something, what about the cape situation in the Netherlands? I am currently writing a fanfic about a group of three rather unique capes there, so I would like what kind of a situation I could put them in.

  30. I wasn’t sure where to leave this, but i hope it finds you well.

    Thank you!🙂 So, so much, for writing such an amazing story and distributing it online like this!! I’ve been reading it through for the first time — just finished chapter 14 and began 15 — and it is so, so great!!! Just so great. Thank you!!

    I noticed a few typoes / grammar slips while I was meticulously reading (I read pretty slow, so it’s easy for me to catch them). After reading what you mentioned above, about wanting to edit everything before publication, I realized that I may as well put my first-time-reader eyes to use and start reporting them for you! And if you do see this and do make edits, feel free to delete this comment after🙂

    Okay, here are the ones I found between 12.1 and 15.2:

    I mean, our territory wasn’t worth risking that the world ending.
    Since the usual means of communication were out, and it might be some time before cell phone towers were out, I’d have to use messengers [before cell phone towers were up?]
    Interlude 12
    conjuring up storms of glass shards and flame to block their victim’s retreat. [victims’]
    Interlude 13 1/2
    Dad ignored her, mom was self-centered and Brian was too focused on what needed to be done that he ignored everything else. [so focused]
    I have to say I admire this armor, so why not let take that to the logical conclusion?
    Even compared to being in Bonesaw’s clutches, I felt more helpless as ever.
    She had one arm out, a hand tracing the side of the building she was walking by, as if to guide her through the effects Grue’s lightless world.
    and with my upper body being further away, I couldn’t get the same leverage push myself out with my arms.
    If she didn’t, I was ready to escape by pointing out that lunch would be waiting for us. [If she didn’t what?]

    There were some more slips before 12.1 that I noticed, but didn’t write down. I’m sorry about that! I hope that this can be of use to you. Thank you so, so much for all you do!! I wish these characters were real🙂

  31. Just finished Arc 2, and it was amazing!!!

    Found a few more typoes, so I’ll leave them here:

    I hated that he’d turned something I could almost make peace with -being a villain- and he’d turned it into something that I was deeply ashamed of

    Coil won’t let Victor get in situation where he can pick up anything special unless he agrees to join [in a situation]

    I knew that we wouldn’t instantaneously click, that everything would be fixed. [that not everything would be fixed]
    I offer goodies to any people from the shelter willing to band together and scare them off, anything too difficult, I use the mercenaries you provided. [semicolon before “anything”]

    following the thin trail of bugs that I was gathering between him and the warehouse we were keeping supplies.

    Not only had it been going nowhere, but she’d had had the upper hand, so to speak.

    Outside of the auditorium, Coil’s men gathering in the lobby and at the sides of the building. [were gathering]

    attemtps to catch my breath made for a self-perpetuating cycle.

    “Because the Simurgh’s been replying old memories for me,
    The sort of stuff that , and you’re sabotaging me.

    Interlude 18x
    But I somehow feel better about this than sending him to go obey you than telling him to go listen to and obey the Suits, or the Protectorate, or Red Gauntlet, or whoever.

    They connected to the ends of my hair, and moved beneath it, giving it more volume and helping it come little alive,

    Interlude 18z
    The C.U.l China. It was good to be right. “Did you download anything onto the drives, or-” [C.U.]

    The tunnels the trucks had used were too small for her mass,

    It wouldn’t be winning us any points with the good guys, ignoring courtesy, but the fact that Tattletale and Regent had disappeared from our rendezvous spot and that they were now in the midst of a group of twenty-seven heroes.

    Her body dragged against the building’s face until that she had to stop and pull away.

    Thanks so much Wildbow!

  32. WOW! Just… Just WOWOWOOWWOW!!!! This was… this was… SUPERB! STUPENDOUS! So amazing, so, so, so worth three weeks of my life🙂 I will carry this story with me forever, such an amazing journey. THANK YOU SO SO MUCH, WILDBOW!!

    Here’s my final typoe list. There were times during Chapter 29 when I saw a typoe or two, but didn’t have the ready means to record them; but this is still a mostly complete list (and during those times, I believe the typoes were found by others the comments below). Oh man… those typoe comments. Sometimes, I wish they weren’t there😛 Something really REALLY intense would’ve just happened, and the first comment I read is TYPOE THREAD. >P Anyway, here’s what I found (spoilers redacted, so someone seeing this won’t know where the plot goes):

    Where one of his lights was set next to a wall, it redirected one running duplicate into a wall. [awkw; “wall” used twice, perhaps unintentionally]

    Interlude 21
    “And she planned to be gone long time,” *someone* said.
    “God, I hate this city,” Lily said. [two spaces between Lily and said]

    Drones, the annoying little bastard spheres that had electorcuted me on multiple occasions

    Interlude 23
    A a man in gleaming armor extended a hand to Three, who’d stepped away from the group. [A a]

    They destroying the ground beneath his feet, trying to get him when his focus was elsewhere and his ability to redirect the energies of a given attack was reduced.

    Interlude 24
    The first would be using a sword long enough to reach past his Manton effect bypass, the second is to somehow within that range and survive. [somehow ___ withing that range]
    Chevalier pulled his sword from the ground, swayed, and very fell over.

    As far as could tell, the Vegas capes had [2 spaces As far as could tell]
    Once inside, we made our way up to the top floor, where the Wards’ rooms and the ‘hub’, as the others called it. [no verb]
    Enough or three or four swarm clones. [Enough for]
    attacking to recognize threats and attack without hesitation when needed. [attacking to recognize threats? perhaps a different word was intended?]
    “*some place* would happen,” I said. Except without the severe losses. We’d lose people, some place would get damaged, but we’d *spoilers redacted*.” [missing ” before Except]
    Somewhere along the line, t had become something of a habit, as we ended our sessions. [it]
    luring a local power into a fight, with a plan already in mind [two spaces “with a”]

    Do me a favor and fill me in on everyone else’s status and locations until they’re within a twelve-hundred feet of me [within a twelve-hundred-foot radius? within twelve-hundred feet?]
    “There’ more danger if you derail the plan. They won’t even see us.” [There’ should be something else?]

    Sand billowed in dramatic clouds the Dragonfly settled on the beach. [as the Dragonfly]

    I could sense it’s silhouette with the few bugs I had near the area. [its]
    But Grace had powers now too. [now, too]

    This is an entire quote: ( “Attack the cities, target *spoiler*, assassinate all of these powerful capes that are coming after me…”

    “Or I could do all of the above.” [<- leave off quote after 'me…', to indicate continued speaker] )

    Interlude 26a
    It jarred, to wear a mask that seemed to symbolize that transition, that while wanting nothing less than to walk down that road. [grammar error maybe?]

    “It’s very, likely,” *spoiler somebody* said, unruffled. [comma between very and likely]

    If one were to put a argyle sweater and khakis [an argyle]

    Interlude 27
    flying through the air, momentarily berift of his flight. [bereft]

    There’s shit sprouting up all over, so maybe I could save issue seven is everything else put together. [say?]

    Crews of people working in groups to erect basic shelters, bringing down trees and reducing them to basic components that they could form into shelters. [shelters twice]
    They’re selfish and injust and unfair. [unjust]

    We’ll also need to this area.
    My students are fine when I’m giving the orders, but they’re prone to undecision at key junctions. [indecision?]
    “The C.I.U.,” Teacher said. [C.U.I.?]

    Every bomb that hadn’t been in some secure housing, every bomb that was small enough to drop through the doorway, to plummet to the ground below *character name omitted for spoilers*. [no verb in this sentence]
    set Zero aside [probably not a mistake; but said "Zero" instead of "Null"]
    I could tell how much damage that had been done even before I did any headcounts. [how much damage had been done]
    I *spoiler spoile spoiler* over her, leaving in in the middle of the room with the capes [leaving her in the middle of the room]
    and I’d pretty much but there were options for future attacks. [pretty much what?]
    There was a gun build into the construction, [built]

    The resulting crater that compared with the one Leviathan had made in the real Brockton Bay. [missing a word, not a complete sentence]

    There were one or two nods around the group.”And it’s going to be hard,”. [space: between "group." and "'And it's"]

    I’m not the kind of person who give you any good answers.
    I’m not /articulate/d. [italics left off of final 'd']
    Some fuckstick came into my fucking neighborhood, cozied up to his old girlfriend, then waltzed with their kid. [possibly "waltzed away"? I may just not be used to hearing waltzed used that way]

    (Thank you, Wildbow)

  33. Hey, Wildbow
    I have been reading Worm for some weeks know, and I must say, that I am a huge fan of the world you have created! The depth of characters, the creativity of the powers, and the impact that parahumans are having on society, everything. You have made the world soo detailed, that I can’t help but feeling inspired to create my own characters, and new adventures. But I am not an author, and I don’t really have the skills to write fanfiction and stuff.
    Therefore, I have a suggestion for you.. (for lack of a better word)
    Have you ever thought about making it possible for fans to visit the world of the parahumans in the form of a pen-and-paper roleplaying game? It would be so amazing to be able to gather some friends, create some characters, and start my own adventure as a gang of parahumans!
    The world s detailed enough, and you kind of already made “classes” by categorizing powers.
    The Game would need core mechanics and character sheets, but other than that, I think it would be pretty easy to make… It would make a game I would play…
    Anyways, hope you read it, and that you will think about it, even if pen-and-paper RPG’s isn’t your thing🙂

    • There is a pen & paper game, work in progress, by myself. Ask on the /r/parahumans subreddit when you’re done reading, or go to the IRC (listed in the subreddit sidebar and visit #Weaversdice where we hang out and playtest), but wait until you’re done, as there are a few minor spoilers in the game.

  34. Hey, new reader and upcoming author as well. Wanted to ask, did you have to go through any copyright issues and if so how did you solve them? I mean, did you have to register this story somewhere before posting or was there a different way?

  35. God damnit, Wildbow! What does Sleeper do?! No mention of his power, as far as i could see, in the story. I found your spreadsheet with the powers and names of the Parahumans, but his effing power is… Garh! I need to know!

  36. Would it be possible to have an option to change the white text on black background to standard black on white ? This is pretty difficult for me to read, and I don’t think I’m the only one.

  37. Are u planning on selling any Worm merchandise? If you already are, where can I find it. If not, you should think about it.

  38. Hi Wildbow. I just finished Worm and I’m very impressed. Would you please tell me, are you OK with a Chinese translation of it on a per-chapter basis in a website solely for this? I’m very interested in introducing Worm to Chinese readers. Thank you.

    • I would be ok with it, but only if you did nothing commercial with it and made it absolutely clear it was my work, with a clear label and a link back to Worm on every page. If you could include links to the paypal/patreon options, that would be cool.

  39. Wildbow, I know you were talking about potentially editing and making this into a ebook or print book. Might I suggest using lulu.com? you would be able to sell the books on a made to order basis, thereby incurring less cost to yourself. You can set the price to cost exactly the amount of production, or any amount more for yourself, and it usually is free to host on the website. They take a portion of the cost of production for each book to pay for their services when one is sold.

    I was just thinking that that may be a better publication option for you so you did not have to foot the bill–the cost would be given to those who chose to purchase it.

  40. Just so you know someone converted this into an ebook already and it’s been floating around. The ebook is actually really nice- if you want let me know and I can email it to you, and perhaps you can self publish on Amazon. I know I would personally be more than happy to pay you for your work.

  41. Hey just a reader that has got to put this web serial as the best book i have ever read. Just wondering if a sequel is coming anytime soon

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