Friday, January 30, 2009

Extended Series in Heartsong?

Susan Page Davis commented on Becky’s January 21st post: “I would like to know if JoAnne ever ‘extends’ a Heartsong series. I've had people ask me to write the stories of secondary characters in my Heartsongs, but I usually consider a 3-set complete. I do remember Cathy and Kelly Hake doing 6 or 7 books in the Chance series, I think. Is this something you would consider—say 3 more books connected to a trilogy that was well received?”

The Chance books by Cathy Marie Hake, Kelly Eileen Hake, and one by Tracey Bateman were before my time with Heartsong, but according to Becky, “Something about the Chance family really connected with the readership so we kept the books coming.”

I would certainly consider doing something like that again if we see have many readers begging for stories to continue about a particular group of characters. The key word there is many. I occasionally get requests like this. But I have yet to see feedback flooding in for a specific series to continue. I realize I don’t know every bit of feedback because many readers contact authors directly. So, I’ll leave it up to you guys to let me know if you are getting lots of requests for an “extended series.” Then I’ll consider that along with any feedback I might have heard and make a decision.

Sound good? Bottom line is, extending a series is definitely something I’d consider but only if there’s plenty of good reason for it.

I hope that answers your question, Susan. As Becky promised, a free book will be coming your way!

This topic made me remember what a fan I used to be of the Babysitter’s Club series by Ann M. Martin. That sure was an extended series! I couldn’t get enough of Kristy, Mary Anne, Claudia, Stacey, Dawn, Jessi, and Mallory. And the series continued long after I grew out of them! I think I stopped reading at about Book #70, but the website says the series stopped at Book 131. Not to mention all the super specials, mysteries, and other spin-off series. Wow.


Susan Page Davis said...

Thanks, Joanne! I'm sure a lot of authors have wondered about this. I know I loved the Chance brothers. Hope you all are having a great day in Ohio. And thanks for offering book prizes. That makes it even more fun to get answers out of you ladies!

Vickie McDonough said...

I've had people ask me that same question before. It's good to know that you're open to extending a series if there's enough of a demand.

As a kid, I read every Black Stallion book that was out there. I also enjoyed Nancy Drew books. I've read some series as an adult, but I prefer that each book be a stand-alone book rather than have a book just leave you hanging until you can read the sequel.

Anonymous said...

My kids were crazed Baby Sitters Club readers. I read a few of them and at some point I realized that about 1/4 of the book (okay maybe not QUITE that much) was a virtually cut and pasted recap of who all the babysitters were and their current place in the scheme of things.

Sweet Valley High and Sweet Valley Twins, too.

Blogger won't accept my identity today for some reason...hmmmmm

Mary Connealy

CatMom said...

I'd forgotten about the Baby Sitters Club books! My oldest(Amy) read quite a few when she was young (still have them on a bookshelf-LOL).~ This is totally unrelated to your post, JoAnne, but could you please post another Jodi pic in the near future?!
Blessings, Patti Jo :)

Aaron McCarver said...

I have always loved series! Read so many when I was a kid. Still do! I even love cliffhanging series, but I also love those that can be standalones within a series. Other clubs seem to do very well with one author writing many books about one town or one extended family with all of these books being standalones as well. I have to say my favorite books of all time are "The House of Winslow" books by Gilbert! I love generational sagas. Most of these books can be standalones, also. Anyway, I like the potential. Thanks so much, JoAnne, for all you do for all of us!

Ausjenny said...

I read the sweet vally high books too use to have them on order at the local bookshop. I love keeping reading about the one family even over centuries.

Christy Barritt said...

Oh my goodness--I used to LOVE the Babysitters Club. Read all of them and couldn't wait for more. The Sleepover Friends, too.

I haven't thought about that series in a long time. Fun memories!