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Shamrock

Writing a series of books query

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I have now written two books as a series  or  a duology.  (Demons of Sphinx & Child of No One)

 

I am now debating whether to start a new book or consider writing a 3rd book so the series is trilogy.

 

Out of curiosity I am wondering what agents and publishers prefer? Do they prefer duologues or trilogies or are they not bothered?

 

At the end of the day I will work on the idea that holds up and interests me but I would be interested to know people's views.

 

 

 

 

Edited by Shamrock

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You won't like this answer. (I sure don't.)

 

What agents and publisher want is a stand-alone. Period. Especially for first-time writers, but, honestly, for all writers except those who have already proven success for series.

 

They won't take it if it is longer, because the first book has to succeed to warrant a second book. And the second has to succeed to warrant the third, etc. Which answers how long they do want it. (Doesn't matter until the one before it is successful.)

 

As for how to approach them on a longer-than? This was how I was told to do it:

"THE COMFORT BAN is a 47,000-word MG urban fantasy stand-alone with series potential."

 

Annoying, ain't it?

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That's helpful.

 

Both books can be read independently  because each book's story is self contained.  So if someone read bk 2 it wouldn't matter that they had not read bk 1. 

 

It is just that I have some.of the same characters of bk1 in bk2 but the two.main ones are new in bk2.

 

Edited by Shamrock
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Yeah, I agree with Spaulding, Shamrock.  You can hit them with the series potential later if they just will accept Book 1.  I assume, of course, that you end Book 1 successfully!

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On 2/13/2020 at 8:25 PM, Jeff Potts said:

Oh...I see a long, painful, uphill battle in my future...

Pain level - 2. Like a recurring sinus headache. But, hey, not as bad as broken bones, or finding out your heater needs to be replaced. ;)

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On 2/13/2020 at 3:00 PM, Spaulding said:

 

What agents and publisher want is a stand-alone.

Wow, glad I read this.

 

I was worried about word count, so I thought I would break my novel into two parts.

 

*crumples idea and flings it into the trash*

 

Better to find out now though. Thanks!

 

 

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On 2/17/2020 at 8:16 AM, RockyMtn Gal said:

*crumples idea and flings it into the trash*

*Taking something out of Gal's trash can, smoothing it out, pulling Gal back to her writing spot by her coffee mug, and pointing.*

 

No idea-crumbling allowed. Here are other choices:

  • Come back to it after first book becomes successful.
  • Tighten the word count.
  • Make it two novels, but have the first one stand alone.
  • Make it a long novel after your first novel is successful.
  • Bypass agents and publishers.

(Hey, mine is a seven-book story, and I'm not letting agents or publishers change my mind. Too good a story to skip it. If Beatrix Potter and Amanda Hocking could do it, so can we.)

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As a romance reader (and writer), the best selling product and one of my personal favorites are series stand alone. In romance (not sure about other genres), it is common to have a series that are stand-alone books but are connected. This is done by following a loved side character from the last book. In each new book, you get a new main character. 

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Just now, Shamrock said:

That is what I have done in book 2.

Then I would let them know you have ideas for a second stand-alone book that is connected to this one. It shows you are serious about your writing but don't press it as a half to. They will likely want a wait and see how the first book does approach. 

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2 hours ago, Spaulding said:

No idea-crumbling allowed

 

*Salutes*

 

I'm not so sure mine would work well as a standalone with later sequels.

 

But...I do tend to be "wordy".

 

Anyway, you have 7 books planned?

Genre?

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21 hours ago, RockyMtn Gal said:

 

*Salutes*

 

I'm not so sure mine would work well as a standalone with later sequels.

 

But...I do tend to be "wordy".

 

Anyway, you have 7 books planned?

Genre?

MG (middle-grade-- i.e. 2nd to 5th graders) urban fantasy/teddy bear epic.

 

I tend to be wordy too, but I think that's been established. 😆

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I heard that saying your book is "a stand-alone with series potential" is the phase publishers are looking for. Granted this was coming from a YA author, so depending on genre I suppose your mileage may vary. 

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