So, do you write a prequel, a sequel, or a new story? How do you decide?
I’ve read many books by authors that write stories then go back and write stories that tell the history that happened before the story they just told. Sometimes I like to read these and sometimes I don’t. I guess it depends on how much I fall in love with their world.
Sometimes I enjoy reading sequels, if the books are not cliffhangers and I don’t have to wait six months to two years to read the next episode. BUT, I don’t really like the story to go on forever without any discernible ending. For example, I started reading the Wheel of Time series and really enjoyed the first five or so books, then I became tired of the never-ending story and stopped reading them. I would ask my son (who continued reading them) when each book came out if it was the last. Nope. No chance. When I found out the series was finally coming to an end, I bought the last couple of books and put them on a shelf to wait for the last one. When that one comes out, I’ll re-read them all. Until then, I won’t bother.
I enjoy new stories set in the same world, universe, or with the same characters more than a never-ending continuation of one long story. I also enjoy totally new stories. One of my favorite writers was Andre Norton. Her books were all stand-alone, but she did several books with the same characters or the same world.
My novel, A Singular Gift, started as a stand-alone novel. After writing it, I had some requests for more stories about my main characters, Jean and Wayne. So, A Singular Chance came to be. Another suggestion came that I write a prequel to the Singular Series. I am working now on A Singular Inheritance, which will not be a full novel, but a long short story. This story goes back to Celtic Ireland. I plan to make it for free on Smashwords and for .99 cents on Amazon. The charge on Amazon is only because they won’t let authors put books for free. However, if they get enough comments that the book is available elsewhere for free, then they will lower the price to match the lower price elsewhere. Kinda convoluted, don’t you think? Anyway, when I get it finished, I’ll ask friends to help me make it free on Amazon. Next in line to work on is A Singular World, which will finish up Jean and Wayne’s stories. Then, I have about three books in some way related to things that happen in the Singular Series, but with different characters. AND about five or six stand-alone (at least for now!) book ideas are waiting in the wings.
So, prequel, sequel, or new story? I’m winding up doing all three! How about you?