Length of #fantasy fiction

Since starting NaNoWriMo2015, I’m beginning to understand the draw of writing trilogies and series.
I decided to draft book 3 of my WIP ‘Bloodlines’ to see if a third book was warranted. I had no real plan, except that a distance, long forgotten enemy was going to make an unexpected return. The characters have come to mind so easily and have given me plenty of scope to carry on their stories. I know their pasts, their motivations and how they will react so it’s been easy to conjure scenes between them. Although I concluded book 2 happily, I’ve realised there are plenty of new challenges ahead for my characters. It’s been a pleasure allowing myself to write without censor and revisiting these characters has been a joy. I’m too far off the word count to complete NaNoWriMo, but I’m glad to be taking part. I should have planned to publish my first novel in a different month. That’s something to remember for next time.

Suzanne Rogerson Fantasy Author

A recent blog on fantasy-faction.com got me thinking about the length of fantasy books.

They are usually weighty tomes, which I don’t have a problem with until you start building those into trilogies and series and clocking up thousands of pages.

I believe there should be more standalone novels in fantasy. It’s always sad when a book you’ve loved comes to an end, but isn’t it good to have closure? To know that the next book you pick up will be the start a new adventure with the author. To discover new worlds and find new characters to fall in love with.

I’ve even been put off starting series because the scale of them is just too daunting (Game of Thrones as an example, though I’ve loved the TV series). As an author I’m in awe of the skills involved in holding it all together, but as a reader I…

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Why you should take part in #NaNoWriMo2015

It’s gives you permission to write   –   Allow yourself a reason to sit at the computer and just write without distraction. Let the dirty dishes build up, forget to put away the washing or do the ironing. You have a word count to meet!

It’s enriching   –   To see the word count build shows you that you can write something longer than a short story. You do have a novel in you, even if it takes some heavy editing to find it in the end.

There’s no pressure to write perfectly   –   No one will ever see it. You can let the ideas flow from your fingertips without censorship. Let the story take its course and see where the characters lead you in their misspelt, ungrammatical way.

A way for the ideas to find release   –   It’s a great way of getting the ideas in your head down onto paper. The story will grow from just an idea into something more tangible. The more you write, the more real the characters will become. Before long, they will take over and start writing their own story.

There’s no time for Writer’s Block   –   If you want to beat that word count, you can’t allow a silly block to get in the way. Write around the block. Write a different scene, there’s no need for order. Let the characters have a mundane conversation and see if they get bored and lead you in a new direction. Just don’t stop writing.

I love the freedom NaNoWriMo has given me after two years of intensive editing and rewriting. Now that I’ve finally produced a novel for publication with all the time consuming  formatting that’s involved, I have an excuse to stop worrying for a while and start enjoying writing again.