Writing a series: 5 Things you Need to Know
If you want to construct a writing career that spans decades and provides a good living— write a series. Your readers will go out and get the first book, and keep going through the list, into infinity as long as you feed them.
When I planned the series I wanted to create, I read a lot of books with humorous characters. I wrote Disk of Death purposefully aimed at a series. But like so many newbie authors, I didn’t insert a subplot that would go forward into future books, (namely Yew to a Kill). Now, in my soon-to-be-released book, Schooled in Murder, I have totally added in a very cool subplot that will be the basis for the rest of the series.
What is the cool subplot?
You have to read Schooled in Murder to find out.
And it is coming out this weekend on pre-order!
Five things you might need to know about series
A few things to note about series:
- Be sure to pay attention to continuity issues. Does the main character live in a town specifically named in book one? Don’t change it. In fact, don’t change her car, his limp, or the style of food in the restaurant they go to all the time.
- Be sure to give a new reader some props by repeating info in subsequent books. Not everyone reads from book one through the series, some people will start at book four. Everyone will need a few bones tossed their way to be able to keep up.
- Don’t be scared to re-read your prior manuscript to keep yourself on task with things that happened before the current book. You will drop items into your manuscript that you want to revisit in the new edition.
- Think carefully about design elements that go into all of your books and associated materials. Does a potential reader know that it is a series just by looking at the covers/book marks/etc?
- Remember to make each book in a series a fun read all unto itself. Yes, it may be part of a series, but it should always be able to be a fun read that stands alone without someone having to read the one before it.
I am currently experiencing my very first cold of the year, -*insert Grumpy Face* but I hope to be able to bring you a new live spot on Facebook soon. I am writing during Nanowrimo this year and posting my results each night on my FB feed. If you haven’t friended me over there, do that. I love hearing from all my friends!