1. pippin1710
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    pippin1710 Member

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    Uneeded Prequel?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by pippin1710, Oct 15, 2008.

    I was thinking if it is a good idea to write an "uneeded prequel"? as in a book before that is not needed to understand the series (think the hobbit in the lord of the rings) I have been planning a series for sometime now which is starting to shape up but i have not started really writing it yet although i desperatly want to I think the biggest thing keeping me back is my ability of writing being a still a student writer. Then i remembered the hobbit and was wondering if I should write a novel that takes place in my world a short time before the planned series. Giving me much writing experience and a more clearer back drop in to my world for when I work on my series. If it gets rejected at the publishers then no big deal since it is not needed to make sense of the series and has served its purpose of building my skill and confidence and maybe hammering out some ideas i keep switching between in my series.

    Seems like a good idea but would like someone to give me their opinion on these types of novels
     
  2. lordofhats
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    lordofhats Contributing Member

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    There's a slight difference for LotR as the Hobbit was written and published first. Technically LotR is a sequel to the Hobbit, but I get your point.

    You should ask yourself if a prequel is really necessary. Does it offer an expansion on the already presented story line? Does it add more than it takes away? Can it clarify the already existing narrative? Many prequels aren't needed to understand the main story line but they've often offered something like a new take or an expansion on character backgrounds on background events. It's all a matter of whether or not writing the prequel adds to the story, or if it's just a peripheral novel that adds nothing new or exciting to the story (Although the later isn't exactly a killer. I've seen some prequels that added nothing new but were still fun).
     
  3. pippin1710
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    pippin1710 Member

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    Ok so I should focus the plot on the novel to add to the series overall effect. What came to mind when i read this is heros past generations being very cruel. Or should I focus more on the plot and politics in what is happening to the world or try to combine two ideas like these?
     
  4. lordofhats
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    lordofhats Contributing Member

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    That's up too you, you're the author. When I think of prequels I always am reminded that I tend to start story lines in the middle of something and that a prequel could always go back and explain how it all got started.
     
  5. Etan Isar
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    Etan Isar Contributing Member Contributor

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    I should point out the The Hobbit did indeed contribute many things to the trilogy, but that's beside the point. I don't see anything wrong with using a "prequel" to get a better sense of the story, or to improve writing skills. The question is whether or not you really want to invest in an entire novel for this purpose. I will not quote the oft-given advice that you should never start out planning a series to be published(well look, I guess I did... but I'm not necessarily promoting that idea). You could of course start with something in the middle range, such as a novella. But since it's mainly a "practice" book, I doubt that it'd have much chance of publication, and thus as a book, I must answer your final question with: "Not much"... as a book, but might work as practice.
     
  6. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    There's nothing wrong with a prequel-if written correctly. I'm writing a prequel/sequel to "the betrayal" which is all the storyline that lead up to the events in the first book. Are the necessary? Maybe, maybe not...but it would allow one to see how Kate Almir got to the place in her life she is at in the first story...so it depends.

    Just remember, you are the author, and write it if you want...if it doesn't fit, then just trash it...otherwise keep it.
     
  7. Vertz
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    We don't always have to write to get things published -- I've written pieces that I wouldn't publish, and I think it's good to just write as needed. I keep a journal for more or less therapeutic reasons. I certainly won't have that published, but it still helps me grow as a writer.

    Basically, write if you want to. Writing of any kind can help you grow as a writer, if you look at it all as a learning experience. You can even use this prequel to clarify the story for yourself and see if you need to include pieces of it through the actual novel.
     
  8. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    If it's a good story, write it. If it isn't, don't. Don't just write it to fill in pieces of the "main" work.

    Forget it's a prequel. If it will stand on its own, then go for it. Otherwise, shelve it until you come up with a storyline worth writing.
     

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