Writing a book series

A screenwriter named Jason Connolley read my first horror novel, Fiend: The Manifestation, the other day. He liked it, spread the word about it, and reviewed it on Amazon.com and a few other sites. He then got back to me and asked, "So, when can I take a look at the sequel?"

The question hit me like a brick to the face. The sequel? Well, I have already started on a sequel. More than started, I have finished a sequel. It still has to be edited and polished, but it is there. But, I had never thought, just months after the release of the first, that I would be getting questioned about the sequel. This was an eye opening experience for me because it gave me a real taste of how the literary community works and the speed at which it operates. Writers don't have the time to sit back and enjoy the release of their most recent work. As soon as it is out, the gears have to shift into one of two other modes: either marketing the work that was just completed, or starting on that new project that just popped into your head. I have done quite a bit of online marketing for Fiend: The Manifestation, and more is planned now that the paper copies are set to be released on Amazon, B&N.com, and in brick and mortar stores. But, the time has now come for me to focus on the sequel.

Fiend: The Gathering Darkness, picks up just minutes after where The Manifestation ended. After reading through the rough draft, Jason Connolley said that he likes it more than the first because, "It moves just as fast as the first one but packs more horror and twists." I agree with him. While the first novel is set in a demonic world filled with monsters and other nightmares, The Gathering Darkness takes place in our world but with the horrors from the first crossing over to exist in our reality. It makes for a believable nightmare that begs the reader to question what they believe in. The next step in the process, get the sequel edited and get it on the shelves. After that, market and start on the next step.

The funny thing is, right after Connolley finished reading the sequel he said, "Man, that one was great. Now, how about the third?"

Guest post by Phil Bolos


  1. I've had that same reaction with the recent release to Book Three of The Whistle Creek Series. I've published all three books and, even though I thought I'd finally reached a wonderful ending to the trilogy, I've already had people asking me for another book in the series. My question is this: When does an author know...the END. No more sequels? I felt like three was a good number for the series. It gave me the chance to tell three different stories, just as I wanted. But I did leave it where I could easily extend the series to a couple more books, if I felt I needed to, without leaving loose ends in the final book.

    I recently read a question asked to Nora Roberts concerning her Bride Quartet series (which I loved btw). Readers wanted to know more about the other three womens' weddings. I was glad to hear she'd laid that series to the side and had no intention of extending it. Just as I decided on my three-book series. She had a goal in mind and she's sticking to it. But wouldn't it benefit us, as writers, to listen to our audience and try to give them what they want? Help!

  2. Although my own book 'Italian for Tourists' is non-fiction it evolved over the years due to public demand (it started as a simple e-book and now is available in all formats and has a more polished look).

    I've also written short stories which have resulted in numerous requests to be turned into full length novels.

    As writers having public demand for our work is great and important if we want to build a long and success career from our writing.

    When it comes to series I think a lot depends on how much the writer feels they have left to say. What can happen to the characters without 'burning them out'?

    If demand is high and you still have story lines worth exploring go for it. If you feel that the series would lose from trying to take it further, stop it there. It's better to leave it on high.

    Having written a successful series you already have a good fan base to introduce another novel or series to.

  3. Writing a series on one single book story is something really tiring and interesting at the same time... if you have years to devote for your writing passion then you must go ahead..........


I love to hear from you. So feel free to comment, but keep in mind the basics of blog etiquette — no spam, no profanity, no slander, etc.

Thanks for being an active part of the Writers and Authors community.