Motivational Moments…for Writers #29

All works in a series, sequel or trilogy must stand alone. Therefore the writer must duplicate information (set-up) about the characters, place, time, etc., in each book.

Being an avid reader and fond of series, I noticed that it didn’t bother me that I was reading duplicate information. It struck me that it was probably true of most other readers. I doubt readers even notice unless they are ‘binge’ reading an entire series.

My message here to you other writers, is don’t let it worry you. Each book must be written as if it’s the only book that your reader will read of yours. 

It’s also acceptable to throw in teasers from books in the series. For example, I tell (in book #7, World of Murder) of my detective going to a cake tasting in preparation for his wedding.  This might ‘tease’ my readers into wanting to know how O’Roarke and Summer met, fell in love, how he proposed, and so on.
And nothing is sweeter than to have a fan ask if there will be a sequel or if the first book will become a series. Both has happened to me!

“words like wine, words like blood, words out of the mouths of past loves dead. words like bullets, words like bees, words for the way the good die and the bad live on…”  Charles Bukowski

“Mostly, we authors must repeat ourselves…that’s the truth. We have two or three great moving experiences in our lives…experiences so great and moving that it doesn’t seem at the time that anyone else has been caught up and pounded and dazzled and astonished and beaten and broken and rescued and illuminated and rewarded and humbled in just that way ever before.”  F. Scott Fitzgerald


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2 thoughts on “Motivational Moments…for Writers #29”

  1. Great post! I am working on a series and was wondering if some people would say, “I already knew that!” But there are things that happen in the first book that have to be told in the following three novels.

    1. even when I’ve read the entire series (JD Robb’s ‘in death’ series, for example) I am not bothered by the duplicate info. You are sort of doing your readers a favor by
      bringing them ‘up to speed’, so to speak. There are many clever ways to do this. Be inventive and be confident. And thanks for writing!

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