The Future of your Serial?

9 years ago | Stormy (Moderator)

Since I just reached another milestone with mine (finished book #3, yay), I'm begun to get curious about how much others plan to write. Me, for example, I've basically been made to promise that I'll do at least fifty books (and I've also been informed that I'm not allowed to count side novels, only the main series -_-). It's going to be a bit of a challenge (though I've got about 20 plotted so far), but manageable, I believe - and I basically want to be doing this for the rest of my life, so I'm happy to be making such grandiose plans.

However, I'm also aware that not everyone is crazy.

So, what are you plans? A trilogy? A quad-ogy? Following in JKR's footsteps and going for seven? Just going to write until you run out of ideas/the concept becomes stale?

And for a bonus: any idea what your current approximate word count is?

Read responses...

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Responses

  1. Tahjir (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    Wow, the idea of seven full novels terrifies me. I'm aiming at having three, at the very most, maybe six if things really work out well. Fifty is just... wow. That's an impressive goal.

    And I'm up to, counting the stuff I don't put online, around 110K words so far with just my main novel.

    Apocalyptic Urban Fantasy
    http://hangarninetysix.wordpress.com/
  2. intergal (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    For my online novel, I'm not really sure... I can kind of see a sequel idea forming in my head, but not much beyond that. I'll probably concentrate on this for now and see what ideas come up for the sequel, if they do. Including the backlog that needs to be edited, I probably have around 53K at the moment, but that isn't the full novel. I have an outline of the story arc, but it isn't fully written out yet.

  3. Dary (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    Approaching 300k and I'm only now starting to pick up some of the central plot threads. I'm not even 10% through the story yet XD

  4. allantmichaels (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    I have a sequel for my current novel planned, but that's it in this universe. And I'm over 50k words on novel one and it's pulling to a close soon.

  5. M.C.A. Hogarth (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    I used to make elaborate plans like this myself, and then 10-ish novels later I got tired of planning. Now I just write what seems like the good idea at the time. -_-

  6. Stephen C Rose (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    This is perhaps tangental but maybe helpful -- or so I hope.

    I've already suggested elsewhere that texts can be presented in numerous ways online and that it sometimes make sense to break texts up into readable chunks.

    The design of my current main fiction (memoir) project -- "The Complete History of Adam Panflick" (http://panflickinprogressprivate.wordpress.com/) -- is being presented in Books of some twelve chapters more or less. When these are completed and revised, I turn each into a Kindle book.

    So when you say how many books do you plan, my response, just on this project would be 20 or so.

    My nonfiction or previously published fiction is moving to Kindle as well.

    I take thematic posts from my blog and arrange them into short texts -- of 30-70 pages in a Word document -- and price them modestly.

    The same applies to revisions or adaptations of established texts or lyrics.

    Online a solo creator is a writer, a publisher and an editor. Kindle and similar efforts are there as our own stores.

    As to serious novels, I would think that it would be hard to come up with something of quality --not merely formulaic -- more than annually. That would leave little room for any other activities. It will take me at least two years to complete all of "Panflick".

  7. Murazrai (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    I have a huge plan for my web series, perhaps I'll write as long as I live. I have 3 out of 11 novels in a series completed, with the remaining 8 complete in 4-5 years before moving to a sequel series. I will also have yearly NaNoWriMo and Web Serial Writing Month specials as additions.

    As a work of spreading the name, I will have the first novel ported to new writing sites around June. I guess I'll be busy then.

    Chaos Fighters...the fantasy of the scientific magic.
  8. Stormy (Moderator)

    Posted 9 years ago

    Wow, the idea of seven full novels terrifies me. I'm aiming at having three, at the very most, maybe six if things really work out well. Fifty is just... wow. That's an impressive goal.
    Three is a very good number. :D

    Fifty is, ok, impressive is one word. Scary is another. -_- Veryscary is another. >_> At least I don't have to worry about creating a new 'verse every time I write a book.

    For my online novel, I'm not really sure... I can kind of see a sequel idea forming in my head, but not much beyond that.
    In that case, will be you be serialising other works? Or move onto a different type of project?

    Approaching 300k and I'm only now starting to pick up some of the central plot threads. I'm not even 10% through the story yet XD
    Oooh, shiny. :D That's going to be huge once it's finished.

    I used to make elaborate plans like this myself, and then 10-ish novels later I got tired of planning. Now I just write what seems like the good idea at the time. -_-
    Though I rarely outline individual books (though I have for #4, and it's worked out pretty well so far), I need to know what's going to happen in the series at large, so in that regard, I'm a little afraid to fly by the seat of my pants - I need to work out which character dies in which book, which characters get together in which book, etc etc. It also helps me know when to drop certain hints, or start to reveal bits of lore that will come in handy.

    Books of some twelve chapters more or less. When these are completed and revised, I turn each into a Kindle book.
    I like to keep mine in full-length books, but that's just how they form in my head, and it'll also how they're released (one day) in paper format.

    As to serious novels, I would think that it would be hard to come up with something of quality --not merely formulaic -- more than annually. That would leave little room for any other activities. It will take me at least two years to complete all of "Panflick".
    I'm planning on two books a year, roughly, and I think I can manage that easily (well, I have so far at least, and #3 was longer than either of the first and completed in less time, so I think it's achievable).

    And I don't think they're formulaic, maybe because it was conceived as a long-running series - but one where each addition adds something, and they're not just there to pump up the overall word count. I've dismissed a dozen or more ideas because they weren't good enough, or didn't really add anything overall.

    And I'm careful to make sure that none of the plots retread the same ground.

    Like...for example, here are one-line non-spoilery descriptions for the some of the ones I've got planned.

    #1 - MC (Stef) is recruited by the good guys, and witnesses a cosmic natural disaster
    #2 - Stef spends 2/3rds of the book dead, while he boss waits for her to resurrect
    #3 - Stef is converted into something more than human, plot follows the...well, beta testing of this.
    #4 - Masochistic love story between a half-magpie girl and an angel.
    #5 - Humans from an alternate Earth, pursued by an angry god, crash, and attempt to fix their ship.
    #6 - Resident wizard has to confront his not-nice-at-all parents.
    #7 - MC is kidnapped by the bad guys and exploited, throwing the city into chaos.
    #8 - Deals with the lasting fallout of #7.
    #9 - Fairies are the world's experts at two things: sex and genetic engineering, a story about the latter.
    #10 - A complicated murder, and expansion on an important element of the lore.
    #11 - Deals with the new king of the magpies.

    etc, etc.

    It's easy, because I've got a large character base to draw from, but I don't think it's coming at the expense of quality.

    I will also have yearly NaNoWriMo and Web Serial Writing Month specials as additions.
    What goal do you set for WeSeWriMo?

  9. Dary (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    Oooh, shiny. :D That's going to be huge once it's finished.

    Yeah, I'm approaching Lord of the Rings in word count now. It's scary stuff. A lot of people might say "that can't work", but that's nonsense. And given how a lot of these characters (even the 'minor' ones) could sustain novels, trilogies, even serials of their own, I wouldn't be surprised if the end product was twice as long as intended!

    But the way I think of it is: if you novelised Classical Mythology (or any other mythology) you'd have a pretty epic series right there. I mean the Iliad is pretty epic, and that was just a small piece of a much larger story, which itself was part of something even larger. It's the sort of structure I keep in mind. Makes things hell to market though XD

  10. Clare-Dragonfly (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    My serial is set at a college, so I'm hoping that I can keep writing the stories until the three main characters graduate at least. But considering I'm on book 5 and more than a year and a half of publishing the story online, and I've barely gotten the characters through a month, I might die or run out of ideas before that happens!

    As for word count, let's see... I'll hit 200k in a few weeks. My chapters and books are both pretty short. The books would fall into novella category more than novel.

  11. Jim Zoetewey (Moderator)

    Posted 9 years ago

    I have no idea how many actual "books" the story will include, but it's a coming of age story essentially. My assumption is that it will end when the main character comes of age.

    I plan each book, but my plan for the series as a whole is rather nebulous at the moment. I've got ideas for several specific stories, but I'm not sure what order they come in yet.

    Nonetheless, I'm still leaving little hints about them.

  12. Bex Aaron (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    As far as this particular story goes, it will wrap up somewhere near 50 chapters. I wish I could write it forever, because I've grown so attached to these characters, but all good things must come to an end.

    I've thought about doing a book series...perhaps spinning off a character and taking it in a different direction. We'll see how that goes after I finish this story, though.

  13. Robert Rodgers (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    Arcadia Snips should be three books--one of which is done, the other of which is in the works. I had wanted to do an additional story that takes place in the western USA parallel of the novels; a wild west tale with elements of steampunk (with a main character who's a hobbled together Frankenstein monster built from the parts of dead Confederates), but we'll see.

  14. Tamyrlin Ink (Member)

    Posted 9 years ago

    I think I've gone about plotting future writings as less like writing a book and more like writing a television series. I have a main cast of characters, each unique and interesting in their own ways and in their interactions with each other, and I've put them in a setting where they'll have lots to do and in many different ways.

    For instance, I have character-central stories planned for each of the main cast (their day in the limelight, if you will) as well as stories that may only concern half the group. Then I can write another story about what the other half of the cast was doing at the same time.

    And then there's the fact that I've set up for there to be more than ten thousand villains, making for a 'monster of the week' type feel, and the bigger, more fearsome villains that reoccur over a story arc. I've even started to plan stories for minor characters, too.

    Though, deep down, I'm not sure I'll be able to write all my ideas. Some time, I'll just have to wrap it up. I certainly don't plan on making 10,001 different stories for each enemy, plus the incidental backstories and side character stories. Then again, things don't always do to plan...

    The Grimmery - http://thegrimmerynovel.blogspot.com/
    Prologue, Chapter 1, 2, 3 and 4 now available

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