Author Topic: What to write next?  (Read 286 times)

munboy

What to write next?
« on: February 01, 2019, 12:54:15 AM »
I already have my next three books planned out, but this is something I'm curious about....How do you pick what to write next? Do you write the story you want to tell? Do you look at what's selling now? Do you hop on the band wagon or try to anticipate where the band wagon is going to get ahead of it?

For me, I've always written what I wanted to write and in a way, it's kept my writing career on a low simmer because indie YA can be a hard sell online unless you find yourself a nice little niche. For my MG book, I knew it'd be even hard to sell online, but it was written exquisite corpse style with my daughter as just a fun exercise that turned into a neat little story. Plus, it's fun to give her a monthly royalty for it.

But I must admit, I've done research over the past year, contemplating if I should write to what's selling. I even considered writing a LitRPG because it's pretty big right now. Ultimately, I decided against it and I'll just keep writing the stories I want to tell.

What about you?
 
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angelapepper

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2019, 01:39:30 AM »
I take a break after each book and wait until I feel inspiration about a project. Sometimes it's the next "logical" book, the one in a series that's selling, but sometimes I'll decide to try something new.

What works for me is feeling that it is completely my choice. If I scheduled myself for the next two years I'd go mad, probably.

After a few years of publishing, I know which projects are going to pay what, and which ones readers will be excited to read. That's a medium-sized factor in my decision. It's nice to give yourself the choice to make the right choice, ya know? :-)
 

notthatamanda

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2019, 01:48:04 AM »
I started writing two things at the same time this last time around.  One - historical fiction trilogy and two - new adult romance.  My reasoning was when I got burned out for the day working on one, I could switch to the other and be more productive word count wise.   Also because the trilogy was going to be long and I could hopefully publish the NA while working on it.  It worked for about (hold on I'll check)  the first seven chapters.  Then the trilogy took over and I'm 100K words in and I don't know how many chapters.

But I liked the technique so much I may do that again, when I eventually finish the monster I'm working on.  I would limit myself to two at a time though, otherwise I'd end up with a dozen books started, probably.  YMMV as always.
 

OfficialEthanJ

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2019, 02:48:08 AM »
I have 4 planned releases this year, however out of nowhere this week I got struck with inspiration for a brand new (one-off) title. I'm so fired up about it that I am planning to write it concurrently, rather than working on one title end to end at a time.

To your question, though, had that not happened, I have my schedule set up per my current sales and readership activity. The fans have spoken (with their wallets) so my top priority is to give them more of that they want.
 

DmGuay

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2019, 02:58:30 AM »
I always have tons of book ideas at any one time, and some of them outlined.

I'm about to finish the third book in my first trilogy. It was originally supposed to be a 4-5 book series, but the sales don't warrant it, so I'm stopping it at three for now and starting a new series I have outlined.

When picking which thing to start? I picked the one I was most excited about, and that was most alive in my imagination. And, should I die tomorrow, the work I most want out there in the world with my name on it. (I have cancer so that is a thought!)

D.M. Guay | Web site
 

DrewMcGunn

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2019, 04:54:22 AM »
...

What about you?

That's what I'm facing. I'll finish a six book series within the next 90 days. And I don't know what I'm going to do next.
I've downloaded research and have read about what's popular in SFF and I'm just not yet sure.

Within the tiny sliver of the SFF market, Alt-history/time travel I'm doing well enough, but I'd like to write something with a broader appeal, to draw in more readers. I really enjoy reading dystopian and survivalist fiction. I've been thinking over a couple of ideas in which I weave some alt-history into a distopian setting.

Drew McGunn
 

cecilia_writer

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2019, 07:05:39 AM »
I always make a new plan at the start of the New Year. That's when I try to think about things such as how many more of my very long mystery series I can write without people (including me) getting bored - it hasn't happened quite yet so this year's plan has two mysteries, one of which I have a vague plot idea for, one to be written in spring and one in summer. At the moment I'm continuing something historical I started last year, and I hope to write a sequel to it for NaNoWriMo.
Cecilia Peartree - Woman of Mystery
 

Vijaya

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2019, 08:10:39 AM »
I always have tons of book ideas at any one time, and some of them outlined.

I'm about to finish the third book in my first trilogy. It was originally supposed to be a 4-5 book series, but the sales don't warrant it, so I'm stopping it at three for now and starting a new series I have outlined.

When picking which thing to start? I picked the one I was most excited about, and that was most alive in my imagination. And, should I die tomorrow, the work I most want out there in the world with my name on it. (I have cancer so that is a thought!)

I'm in a similar boat minus the death threat from cancer, but it's amazing how much clarity one has when thinking about What Next? I started the New Year equally excited about three different stories, but it looks like one's starting to take off. The excitement factor is really high!!!

Author of over 60 books and 60 magazine pieces, primarily for children
Vijaya Bodach | Personal Blog | Bodach Books
 
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Lorri Moulton [Lavender Lass Books]

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Re: What to write next?
« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2019, 08:13:36 AM »
Usually, whatever people are asking me to finish first.  It will be nice to get away from series for a while (or so I keep saying) but even some of my stand alone stories seem to end up in a series.  :catrun
   
Author of Romance, Fantasy, Mystery, Suspense and Historical Non-Fiction.
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munboy

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2019, 08:55:06 AM »
Usually, whatever people are asking me to finish first.  It will be nice to get away from series for a while (or so I keep saying) but even some of my stand alone stories seem to end up in a series.  :catrun

Same. I wrote a book as a stand alone and here I sit about to get an hour or so of writing on my WIP which is, wait for it...a sequel to that stand alone.  :icon_rofl:
 
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Rosie Scott

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2019, 09:31:00 AM »
I write whatever I want to write first. Thankfully, right now that coincides what readers are asking for, but if it didn't I'd still write what I wanted. Maintaining my love and joy for the craft is most important to me.

The good thing is that my most popular series (fantasy) is so gigantic in scope with dozens of characters that I can continue writing spin-offs, character prequels, and series all in the same universe. The first series I released (dystopian) wasn't as open to those opportunities because of a variety of things, including the high casualty count and the shorter timeline of conflict. But with this series, reader surveys have shown interest in reading prequels of characters who died, stories of those who lived, and even about war generals only mentioned in a historical context. There have been a few readers who wrote in the survey that they'd read about any and all characters, so that's liberating. No matter which story pops into my head next, somebody will want to read it. Right now I'm writing a standalone prequel for a fan favorite, and next I'll be writing a prequel trilogy for another. I write fast enough that I hope that releasing dystopian/sci-fi standalones between fantasy releases won't offend my fans whenever the mood strikes.

Fantasy/dystopian/sci-fi. Writer of bloody warfare & witty banter. Provoker of questions.
Rosie Scott | Website | Release Mailing List
 

Electric Dan

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2019, 09:34:07 AM »
I have 152 WIPs.  Well, 153 as I forgot there's one I haven't added to the spreadsheet yet.

I don't have an audience clamoring for more of anything, so using that as a factor in determining what to write next doesn't work.

That narrows the choices down to what I want to write and what might actually maybe possibly actually sell this time.  Another factor that goes into it is finishing what I start and not jumping from project to project as that's the sort of thing that puts you in a position of having 153 WIPs.

Right now, I am trying to finish up a fantasy adventure and also a space opera.  The space opera was supposed to be a standalone but I've recently figured out how it could be a series, so that means I might have to add a 154th WIP, although I'll probably wait to see if the space opera actually sells first before committing to doing a series.

As for what to write next, I'm not 100% certain.  I am definitely going to finish the aforementioned fantasy adventure and space opera novels before moving on to anything else.  Once I finished those, my plan had been to work on a time travel adventure series, the first book of which was supposed to be released in time for Halloween for I don't know how many years now.  The other option was a paranormal detective series.  But lately I've been wanting to work on a space adventure series I started over thirty years ago.

It is interesting how priorities change.  Way back when, I started some of these things and I liked the characters and stuff so much that I set them aside until the day came when I became a better writer so I could give them their due and really bring them to life like a proper writer should.  And then I created new stuff, and the new stuff became more important to me.  So my advice to prospective writers would have been to finish what you start because you'll probably find that you care more about the latest idea you come up with than your older ideas.  So finish them while you enjoy them and keep moving on.

But now I find myself more drawn to those older (unfinished) stories and characters and wanting to work on them.  It's like there are these beings that have been living in my head all these years and it's time to share them with the world.

Of course, maybe I would feel differently if I had finished those stories way back when instead of putting them off for so long.

On the other hand, a number of those stories written way back then were really, really bad, so perhaps there was some merit to my younger self's idea of waiting until I was a better writer.

Then again, I read through stuff I've written recently and think, well, I'm still not there yet.

Maybe I should have been a plumber.  Machines can flip burgers and bots can write stories, but it's probably going to be a while yet before androids are available to come over and fix your leaky pipes.  Plus, you know, water and electricity don't get along.
     
 

Maggie Ann

Re: What to write next?
« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2019, 10:25:25 AM »
I'm back to my first love, historical fiction/romance set in medieval England. My original trilogy bumped into the Tudor period and I really don't like the Tudors. So this time, I reset the way-back machine to John.

First book is nearly finished although it's going to require major rewrites. It's too far into the swamplands for just an edit.

I've got the timeline for the second and third books and even mocked up the covers for all three. I just need to get back into the habit of writing 5-7 days a week. I'd even settle for 3-5 days.

           
 
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