You ever read a series from start to finish? Like really, from start to finish. You didn’t have to wait for the author because all the books had been written and when you started reading the series, you bought the whole thing because you knew you were going to like it, and you did.
Well, if you read series in this way, then you’re in really good shape to write. If not, then you may not be (unless you read stand-alone novels, which is fine. Nothing wrong with those.)
I recently binge-read a series called Red Rising (It’s an awesome series) and from that reading I’ve been able to see more clearly how the author’s world unfolds and how a series is created. I achieved a sense of clarity that doesn’t come often and my understanding of trilogies and how they’re written has increased. Not exponentially, but simply increased.
Since that reading, I’ve made it a point to read series straight through rather than read one book and then go to something different. I’ve found that when reading a series straight through (much like binge watching Netflix) you read faster, you’re more focused, and you get more enjoyment out of the book than if you hopped from book to book.
I will admit, I don’t know if there are studies on this or anything. And I particularly don’t care because this is just and observation, not an academic essay (which I’m glad to be done writing, forever).
But . . .
This is more of a suggestion for anyone who has trouble reading or can’t figure out what to read next. And to help you, here are some steps on what to do when reading that next book or starting that new series.
- Find the book in the genre you really like
- Make sure the whole series is complete, that all the books are already written for proper binge-reading.
- read the first book
- if you like it, buy all the others. Preferably in one go to avoid unnecessary trips and distractions.
The point of this is so you can better see how an author’s world unfolds and get a better grasp on the bigger picture, how the whole story stretches out like a film reel. Once you can see the picture, you’ll get a better sense on where to end each scene and each installment in your own trilogy writing.
Try it and let me know how it goes in the comments!
Till next week . . .