I have written five standalone novels.
Novel six, which is complete, could have been another standalone, but I’ve decided to write a sequel for it.
Here’s why. But first, why haven’t I written any sequels up to this point?
First, Hemingway never wrote sequels, and I like Hemingway. Okay, that’s not a very good reason for not writing sequels. I like complete stories. I like to bring closure, to show an entire world inside one story. Sequels seem cheap in some respects. Milking characters for more than what they really are.
There are so many bad sequels out there. The only way I would ever write a sequel is if I believe book two can be just as good if not better than book one. That’s actually a tall order.
I’ve ready many blog posts from authors and writers who encourage sequels and trilogies and series to be a great way to build a loyal readership. Readers love to know about the continuing adventures of their favorite characters. I get that.
However, it was still never enough for me to want to write a sequel. Honestly, I’ve never written for readers. I write the story that I have. The story I want to tell. That’s it. And when that story is told, I’m ready to move on to the next story. There’s unlimited creative potential in standalones. Sequels have parameters. I don’t like writing parameters. I like to allow my creative freedoms to take me wherever they want to go.
So I really don’t like sequels, but I’m currently writing one. Why?
Honestly, I don’t rightly know. I think one of the main reasons is that I’ve never done it. I like to challenge myself in my writing and try new things. There are definitely different dynamics which go into writing a series, and I wanted to experience that as a writer to see how it feels. I’m hoping it will be a stretching experience for me.
In addition, it helps a lot that I really love the story and characters I created with my sixth novel, and after 80,000 words, it felt as if the story wasn’t quite complete. Oh, there is plenty of closure at the end, but there were many loose ends and avenues of creativity left to be explored. So it tempted me, and I took the challenge.
I sincerely hope that this will attract new readers who are willing to give this writer a chance. Perhaps this book series will help. Perhaps it won’t. But after six years of serious writing, it’s time to try. Much more about this to come. Stay tuned.