Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Stand Alone Books or A Series?

Do your favorite authors write stand alone books or series books? Perhaps you have a preference in writing one over the other? But which is more marketable, especially if you choose to self-publish?

At my writer’s conference last week, one of the hot topics revolved around writing stand alone books versus a series, and some of the answers I heard from authors and publishers surprised me. In book sales, especially for self-published authors or eBook sellers, a series definitely garners more attention. However, agents were quick to remind authors that they should only write a series if the first book engaged a good sized audience, otherwise they will have written a sequel for a book no one wants to read. As if that wasn’t enough, they went on to explain that it varies greatly by genre, and romance or sci fi genres did much better with series books than literary stories which fared better as stand alones.

Of course, these statements are marketing focused and shouldn’t be the primary motivator when writing a new book, but it’s food for thought that all authors should consider. So where are you in your own writing, debating whether to make a sequel to one of your projects or start on a new topic? What works best for you in your current situation and in your own previous experience?