Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A team

What was it Hannibal use to say on the A Team?  "I love it when a plan comes together."  Well I kid you not I've been contemplating a certain direction for my book for nearly a year now and it is just now finally coming together for me.  I have been struggling with splitting up my original manuscript into a series and quite frankly hadn't completely figured out how until now.  The intertwining of all three, heck maybe even five books has projected itself out before my mind's eye.  Thank goodness, because I was going insane with all of it jumbled up in there.

So here is the deal I believe the first draft, what I had originally thought was a complete novel was in fact the backbone of an epic fantasy series.  I had written the novel before I understood how to write a novel, if that makes any sense.  So much of the book is great conceptually, but it spanned over to much content without enough depth.  Again I hope that makes sense, if not check out my brainstorming formula post.

Okay so that isn't fair for many of you, since it comes off a bit gibberish.  So imagine instead you want to craft the perfect wedding cake.  Each tier would need to be baked separately, stacked, and decorated.  Then you would place that center piece on it as the final touch, right?  Well making a book can be like that as well, only in my case I flubbed it the first time.  I took one cake and doused it with icing, poured on a whole can of sprinkles (ummm, sprinkles), then pressed , no maybe shoved the center piece deep into the pile of goo.

So now I am sorting through it all.  I've baked a few more cake layers which will tier the story better hefting that climatic final book high into the air.

So my question for the day is, how have you set yourself up for sequels or do you bother?  Do you have it all planned out ahead of time and make book one and two interlaced, foreshadowed with items that will easily breadcrumb the readers on into book three?

In other words are you planning on making three distinct wonderfully made cakes? 

Or one magnificent multi-tiered epic piece of literature? 



  1. Yum, cake. I loved Hannibal. The new A-Team is a joke in comparison, but I know that's not what your post is about.

    You should definitely consider writing in series. There's nothing preventing you from pursuing it as long as all your books can stand alone. It's what I wound up doing actually.

    There were so many ideas jumbled up in my head to begin with. I knew where I was going with it, but didn't have enough room to work with it. I had enough to fill three books. And 1700 doubled-spaced pages were not going to cut it for a first novel, so I chopped them into three. The funny thing is that after the first three were done, space was freed up in my mind. Other stories began to pour in. When I finally get published I 'm pretty sure I'll be able to continue the sequel for a while.

    Lately, I've been doing major revision on book one so I can query.

    Good luck.

  2. Love your analogy!

    I've got a SciFi WIP that I'm going to have to do some fixing up to before I can go any further.

  3. I've definitely never thought about sequels that way before. Probably better that way...I'm drooling. I wrote my first YA novel as a "stand alone with sequel potential" which ended up having a bit of a cliffhanger ending to it; I'm still not sure if that was a good idea or not. I have a general idea about where I would take the next book if this one ever gets published...or if I get really bored...but it's not all planned out the way JK Rowling plotted her entire series from the getgo. Maybe I should try that. Right now, I'm going to make a cake. (Seriously).