A Cup of Update & Sequel Tea

First off: Don’t get too excited if you think the title means I’m writing a sequel. Haha.

Second off: Did you know that barbeque is spelled barbecue? That doesn’t even look right! Why do we say BBQ when it’s spelled with a C?!! Also, I have a bottle of organic BBQ sauce that spelled it like barbeque on the back. Just saying. LOL!

Third off: I finished my line edits this weekend!! WHOOOO! I love my story, but by the end, I was so freaking tired of cutting stuff. Over 1000 words total. You may be like, “That’s not that bad!” But it’s exhausting. It’s not like I wanted the last few chapters to be trash though, so I kept cutting stuff, but yeah, exhausting. Also, I have no work-life balance, so that may have caused part of the exhaustion. I had three weeks, and in true me fashion, I made a plan to do it in 10 days and ended up finishing in 7 days.

Fourth off: I finished that book I was trying to read last week. It wasn’t that long, about 230 pages, and the second half was much better than the first half. Sometimes things do get better. So, now I’m reading Harry Potter and Cursed Child. Finally. I’ve had the book for months. ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyways, this probably comes as a big shock to no one, but I’m not a series kind of writer. I’m not 100% against trying it again one day, if the right idea comes along, but I have no current plans dive into that. That said, I’m all for sequels, and I’ve tried a few times to write a sequel, but thus far, it hasn’t panned out.

The first time I got half a chapter into the sequel and realized I hated half the characters from Book One. In this case, the sequel started from the antagonist’s point of view, and it was going to meet up with the original heroes in a few chapters. I realized I never wanted to see those people again. End of sequel. The funny thing is, the story in question is one of my old favorites. It’s terrible, but it will always have a place in my heart.

The second time I tried to write a sequel, I realized after two chapters that Book One had too much going on, and thus the sequel had too much going on, because I was trying to pack too much crap into too few books. #yaylongsentence #endofsequel

The third time I tried to write a sequel, it was part of a planned four book series. I got one paragraph in and scrapped the whole project because I did not even feel like it. I will read series, but I’m really not a fan. I see a series, and I’m like, “How long is this ish going to drag out?” Sure, I read Hunger Games – after all the books were out and I was promised by my sister that I would love them. And sure, I read Harry Potter. But Harry Potter is actually the kind of series that I do like. Related. But each book doesn’t end in some kind of crazy Hunger Games style cliffhanger.

When I first started looking into indie publishing (including both small presses and self-publishing), I read a lot of stuff that said, “Series sell better! You must write a series! SERIES!!”

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I don’t have the faintest desire to write a series. One sequel to the books that spawn one, yes, but a series, no. But I’m also known for being stubborn and doing what I want to do anyway. So, screw that. If I never write a series or even a sequel, I will survive. Besides, there are lot of standalone novels in my own house, naturally. Andย there is also Joe Hill, for example, my new favorite person in the world. He writes in a graphic novel series, but his novels, thus far, have all been standalone.

So, I don’t feel bad.

Anyway, I think sometimes about writing a sequel to “No Rest for the Wicked.” I have no plot, but I have an idea.ย I feel like my novel is open enough for a sequel. And I’m excited about a sequel, but I can’t write a story with no plot! Furthermore, part of the problem is that part of the idea forming that sequel comes from one of the many past novels I have in my wake. I’m still hoping to rewrite that novel, so using ideas from it will render it dead forever. If I told you what it was, you might say, “Oh, it’s not that similar. I mean, the other guy has WINGS for crying out loud!” (The guy in the past novel has wings. No, he’s no an angel. It’s a long story.)

There is a sequel coming out this summer that I’m excited about, so I’m going to read that and see how someone better than me tackles a sequel before making a decision. Because I think I can find a plot in my head if I try. And who knows, I may have an actual plot by then. ^_^

6 Responses to A Cup of Update & Sequel Tea

  1. Sequels strike me as either hard to do or possibly a let down, as a reader. Like, I have vague plans to write about Pearl’s brother Julius sometime this year and I’m writing something that’s about Miles Keegan’s second wife–and how she came to be his second wife–but I don’t know if I’d class either of them as direct sequels or in a series or whatever. Apparently, series sell really well among indies, but oftentimes, I don’t want a series. Just give me the one story, please!

    Then again, I’m stubborn *and* grouchy.

    • Yes! I want just one book most of the time. Series feel exhausting to me. Unless they’re in manga form. I can read 20 of those and still be sad when it’s over! I wonder how long a ten book manga series would be without the drawings.

      I guess Julius’ story and Miles’ second wife’s story would be like companion pieces. I never mind revisiting a world I love.

  2. Yay to finishing those edits! And the bbq thing has always bugged me too…but then bbcue would be really weird.
    I have a love/hate relationship with sequels and series. Of course, it’s great to revisit characters and their stories (and there are series/sequels I love) but they can be frustrating sometimes too (Here’s my short list of irritations because you wanted to see this ๐Ÿ˜‰ Lol! ) 1) It feels like an author can’t write anything else…and who wants to buy 6. . .8. . .12 books to finish a series? 2) Cliff hanger money makers. Grrr….they do it on purpose (some). 3) Series/sequels are easy money makers. Readers like the first and buy the 2nd. That’s why pubs want them and self-pubs recommend them. And is it necessary? Nope. A story can be awesome on its own too. So if that sequel never gets written, no worries. And if it does – super cool too! Because if it’s the story I read, I liked it.

    • I love your list! ๐Ÿ˜€ I feel the same. And sometimes I even feel like they’re trying to manipulate me. LOL! I understand if it’s like Hunger Games, and the overarching plot is just too big to contain in one book. But we’ve all read series that could have been contained in one or two books. And when something goes on and on for 10+ books, yeah, it feels like they’re stuck. Plus, it’s exhausting. I still haven’t read all of the Sookie Stackhouse books.

      I am talking about the story you read. ^_^

  3. I’m with you on sequels vs. series. While having a long-running series is great for authors and publishers, I’m sure, we all know that there are plenty of series that seem to lack direction after a certain point, or should have ended long before they did. Nothing wrong with wanting to end your story in a specific place!

    I *think* I knew the barbecue thing, but now it’s become one of those things where I’m totally overthinking it and all ways look wrong. Like it’s not even a word anymore. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Yes! It doesn’t look like a real word at all! It totally hurts my brain. I kind of got sick of the Sookie Stackhouse after awhile. After 8 books, I’m like, “What’s your point?” They didn’t feel like they were leading to anything. It just felt like she was torturing Sookie in the exact same way, just from a different angle. I still plan on finishing the series one day because it’s there, but I’m not in a hurry at all.

Hi! ^_^