Written by A.L. Kessler, author of Dark War Chronicles series
There are things that I love and hate when it comes to writing a series. I love that I know I’ll see the characters again. They aren’t gone when I type ‘The End’ at the end of a novel or a story. I can always revisit and they have more stories to tell me, but I feel that when the time comes to end it I’ll upset readers and that’s something I don’t want to do. When it comes to writing a series as an author you have to decide when enough is enough and to end it. Everything good comes to an end.
The biggest challenge of writing a series is to keep everything consistent. I personally use a character bible. I used to have it all in a physical binder, but I’m in the process of moving everything to Evernote so that I can access it no matter where I am. With such a large cast, I think it’s needed to keep things consistent and I’ve read books where it’s obvious that the author did not keep track of such details. The other important and hard thing to keep track of is the timeline. This include within each book and over the full series. You don’t want the readers thinking it’s been years between stories when it’s only been a month. This is something I keep track of in physical form in a notebook that I call my Everything Notebook. (It contains pretty much everything…If you couldn’t guess.)
So what about not writing a series? I love standalones because I know that I’m not obligated to write more. I could write more, if I wanted, or I can just leave it as it is. There are some readers who like them. It’s a way of introducing a reader to you as a new author without them feeling like they must commit to a full series. Sometimes they are looking for just a one-book read. As an author standalones are nice because it means I don’t have to worry about weaving complicated subplots that will arch over several books. Sometimes it’s just nice not to have to worry about that.
I don’t prefer one to the other. When it comes to making that decision I have to do what is right for the story or the characters. Each one is different and there has been times where I set out to write a standalone, but another character whispered in my ear that they needed a story and from there a series is born.
About the Author
A.L. Kessler is a paranormal romance author residing in beautiful Colorado Springs, Co. Since she was a teenager she has loved spinning tales. She can easily be won over with gifts of coffee or chocolate.