Naver Webtoon and Munpia, a web novel platform, are on the hunt for the next big web novels, or novels published online, boasting 1 billion won in prize money.
The two companies said Thursday that their web novel contest will open May 11 with two rounds: the first round for fantasy, action, modern, sports and alternative history via Munpia and the second round for romance and fantasy romance works via Naver Webtoon.
The organizers said the prize money is the largest in South Korea for a web novel contest, and they aim to cement their leading position in the genre that has been growing rapidly in recent years.
This is the first joint effort by the two companies, after Naver Webtoon became the largest stakeholder in Munpia in February. Naver Webtoon holds a 56.26 percent stake of Munpia as of April 4.
Munpia is one of the biggest Korean web fiction platforms, with some 63,000 registered writers. Naver Series is a paid service that provides webtoon and web novel services.
"The web novel market is currently seeing a boom as it continues to develop at the same time,” Munpia CEO Kim Hwan-cheol said. “We will not only invigorate the domestic web novel market but also put in the utmost efforts to boost the value of web novel intellectual property through this cooperation with Naver Webtoon.”
“This contest aims to discover talented writers across genres, including the fantasy and action genres for which Munpia is known and bolstering the status of Naver‘s Web Novels and its strength in the romance genres,” said Park Jae-yun, the head of Naver Webtoon’s web novels business.
”We will strengthen cooperation between the two companies throughout the entire process, from the writer’s debut to profit generation, to become hosts to masterpieces in storytelling that both readers and writers can be satisfied with,“ Park added.
While there are no restrictions to participants’ nationality, the contest is open only to novels in Korean. Winning novels will be published on both platforms.