Friday, 29 April 2016

Timing a Trilogy – Results

The Twitter poll results are in. Including three votes I received elsewhere (two for 1 year and one for 6 months), they are:
One year – 12 votes
Six months – 9 votes
One month or less – 1 vote

I was a little surprised so few voted for the 1 month or less option. Whilst a bit fast for me, I thought some readers would like being able to immerse themselves in a trilogy over a couple of months. Mind you, it’s rather helpful, as that would’ve been (from my perspective) the least welcome option.

I also know there can be a bias to the middle in polling (or other things, that’s why sometimes kettles and so on are deliberately split into cheap as chips, middling and swanky fancy expensive versions. People often want to avoid looking cheap, but won’t sell a kidney to afford a kettle, so they get herded towards the middle option).

A few days into the poll I realised there was another factor I need to consider.

If I release the books once every six months, that leaves no time for Sir Edric. So, is it better to concentrate on the trilogy as a block (a single work with three instalments, if you like), and then have the comedy after, or is it better to alternate?

There’s also the issue of self-publishing versus traditional publishing. There are various pros and cons to both, but arguably the single biggest pro of doing it oneself is that the schedule of release entirely favours the author. If you’re being traditionally published then the timing has to fit in with the publisher (they can’t just splurge books, they want a regular tick-over, which makes sense). But that can also mean the author ends up waiting a while.

I’d like to get Traitor’s Prize (the second book) either finished or very close before releasing Kingdom Asunder. That’ll both ease the pressure on me and reassure readers that they won’t be waiting until the End of Time for the sequel.

Many thanks to those who voted. It was interesting to see a close race between the top two options. For those who want fairly regular (typically monthly) updates on my writing progress, do check out my writing blog at (it tends to be more serious business/focused than the eclectic rambles about history, fantasy and so on I put up here).

I’m just about to embark on the first serious redraft of Traitor’s Prize, and how well/badly that goes will go a long way to determining when Kingdom Asunder comes out.


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