The Problem with Sequels

I recently joined the website Scribophile. Essentially, writers gather there to critique and be critiqued by other members of the site. It works on a sort of tit-for-tat system where you get “Karma” for doing critiques and then spend that “Karma” to post stories for critique.

I’m 23,000 words into The Hydra Offensive; Book 2 in the Ansgari Rebellion Series. I didn’t post The Cerberus Rebellion on this site so as I start posting The Hydra Offensive, I’m running into the issue of bringing new readers to my world.

At first, I thought of this as a problem. Why would someone start with Book 2 in the series? Then I remembered, that’s how I started the Honor Harrington series by David Weber. I bought Ashes of Victory (Book 9 in the series) because of the cover art; I bought Books 1-8 and the 3 Honorverse anthologies because of the writing.

I came to the realization that you have to hook readers at the beginning of the book whether they are invested in the series already or not. I need to make sure that the beginning of the book keeps moving, without bogging down with backstory and infodumps.

Have you ever started mid-series and gone back and purchased all of the previous novels? What caused you to do that?

About Joshua K Johnson

Josh is the author of The Cerberus Rebellion and The Hydra Offensive, Gunpowder Fantasy novels set in the Griffins & Gunpowder universe. He is currently working on a new novel set in the same world as well as The Centaur Incursion, Book 3 in the Ansgari Rebellion Series and Loyalty Betrayed, Book 1 in the Liberty Forged Series. He currently works full-time and has an 8-year old and a 4-year old to keep him busy.

Posted on August 20, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: