1. Maiesk
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    Maiesk Member

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    Spreading out a set of fantasy novels

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Maiesk, Jul 15, 2014.

    I'm pretty happy with the plot I have thus far, but the way the story is shaped and develops I can't really see 3 "book-ending" moments. There is a major plot resolution at the end of the first that sets the basis of the plot for the second, but the end of the second ties up the loose ends and resolves the story as a whole with a solid and satisfying ending.

    With fantasy trilogies so popular these days, is it worth trying to engineer a third book? A big part of the first book is opening up one of the main character's back-story so I think a prequel would be overkill. At the same time, I'm not sure I want to spread the two out to make their story into three books. It's possible, but would require extra thought.

    Main question: Other than from a sales perspective, is making an epic fantasy into a trilogy important?
     
  2. Nilfiry
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    Nilfiry Contributing Member

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    Why force yourself into an extra book when all you need is two? It is not worth it unless you really have the inspiration to keep going. Just because it is popular does not mean you have to do it.

    Alternatively, you could just divide your two books into three if you really must, but it is not important at all.
     
  3. Amanda_Geisler
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    Amanda_Geisler Contributing Member Reviewer

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    I actually had this with my trilogy. My books follow directly from the book before it, I pretty much created a important scene and used it as a cliff hanger to lead into the next book. In my first book my werewolves get attacked by humans and in my second book a created a really fun twist of my MC werewolf loosing her wolf because a witch does something to her, I haven't decided what yet. It makes my trilogy feel like one large book broken into three pieces.

    But if you don't have anywhere else to go in your third book then you don't have to work in a third book. If you really want a third book then you will probably need to untie some those story lines in your second book or add in some new ones.
     
  4. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Use as many books as you think are required.

    However, if you decide to go the traditional publishing route, there are a some practicalities you should be aware of. Publishers don't like taking on a series unless they somehow know that the series will do well, i.e., if you're someone famous. So it's important that your first book stand alone (have no major cliffhangers).
     
  5. Maiesk
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    Maiesk Member

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    Thank you for the replies :) I may stick to the two books.

    Hmm, I'd never considered that. I think the ending of the first could stand by itself, though it isn't particularly "happy" as the protagonist's story doesn't really resolve until the end of the second. Strictly speaking the whole thing could be one book rather than two, but it would have to be fairly long for me to be happy with it, and I'm not sure about that for my first book.
     
  6. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    New authors must also consider length when submitting to publishers. Most books by new authors fall in the 80-100k word range, though I've heard that fantasy can go as high as 120k words.
     
  7. Maiesk
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    Maiesk Member

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    It's a fair bit to consider. The entire story could be possible in 120k words but I'm not sure it would fit the vision I had for it. The moment that the story splits just seems too momentous for the end of a chapter and the first plot hitting its peak with so much of the book to go doesn't work in my mind. My original goal was to reach 100k for both books.
     
  8. PensiveQuill
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    PensiveQuill Contributing Member

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    Are you really certain you need a whole book for one character's backstory? Unless that story is of itself an entire and complete story then something tells me it could be edited substantially. If it is a complete story unto itself then wouldn't that make an ideal first book? You can always follow up with the rest later.
     

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