|If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, |
and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined,
he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
From Walden, Thoreau
- Fall in love with your characters, especially the main ones, who have so much more life to live that you can't possibly stop now.
- Write in a genre that lends itself to series, such as mystery, ghost stories, romance, westerns, historical novels, fantasy and sci fi.
- Believe that series sell well and publishers like to buy multiple books because series attract readers.
- Know that the groundwork in the first book will work again, and again, and again.
Karen S. Wiesner, Writing the Fiction Series: The Complete Guide for Novels and Novellas
- Weisner quotes author Thomas Helm: Author and reader dread the end, which is the test of a good novel. Why not expand it into a series?
- Love reading series, from childhood on. If like me you love reading series books, then you thrive on the familiar feelings series provoke.
- Enjoy the setting of your story and look forward to expanding on it so your characters can explore worlds, far and wide.
What? Turn my Masterpiece into a Series? Not!
- Make an overall outline that shows how each novel relates to the others.
- Have an overall plot plan as well as a plan for each novel.
- Be organized. Know where your series will end. Plot a timeline to keep track of events.
- Choose a central conflict or premise for your series that "is the main tension or unknown that needs to be solved."
- Keep track of the details and connecting threads among the novels in order to maintain continuity.
- Plan for the passage of time and how your characters will age.
Linda Wilson, a former elementary teacher and ICL graduate, has published over 100 articles for adults and children, and six short stories for children. Recently, she completed Joyce Sweeney's online fiction courses, picture book course and mystery and suspense course. She has currently finished her first book, a mystery/ghost story for 8-12 year-olds, and is in the process of publishing it. Follow Linda on Facebook.