One of the games I play with myself is inspired by Agatha Christie’s foresight in writing Curtain decades before it was actually pubished (to make sure that Hercule Poirot’s series had a beginning and an end. I talked about that in this blog post.) I’ve been writing and publishing for 28 years. That’s not going to continue indefinitely. (Sadly, I am not immortal.) So, if I write 4 books a year and I actively write for another ten years, that’s forty more books from my fingertips. Let’s round down and say thirty since this publishing stuff seems to get more demanding all the time.
Which thirty books do I most want to write?
Which thirty books would be smartest for me to write? There are plenty of variables to juggle here, including creative fulfillment, growing revenue, completing series, and making my readers happy.
I could just carry on as I have been in recent years, creating a series, writing the books in it, then creating a new series. I could continue to alternate between sub-genres – which is good for creativity and replenishing the well, but less good for building momentum in digital sales.
Or I could make a plan. I like plans so this is a tempting option.
What open tickets do I have?
First, there are pre-orders:
• Dragon’s Heart (July) and Dragon’s Mate (October) , books 3 and 4 of the DragonFate Novels.
• Just One Silver Fox (January), book 7 of Flatiron Five Fitness
• The Wolf and the Witch (April), book one of a new trilogy of Scottish medieval romances, Blood Brothers. (This is one of those publishing decisions: Scottish-set medieval romances are more popular and I have an idea for a trilogy. I’m curious to see how it performs compared to my other medieval romances.)
So, that’s four books.
Then there’s what has to be written to complete various book series but hasn’t been scheduled yet:
• two more DragonFate Novels, one for Theo and Mel, plus one for Sebastian and Sylvia
• the other two books in that new Scottish medieval trilogy, Blood Brothers
• two more Brides of Inverfyre books, The Stolen Bride and Nigel’s book
• two more Brides of North Barrows books, Anthea’s story and Eurydice’s story
• six more medieval romances in the Rogues & Angels series, starting with One Knight’s Desire
• three medieval romance novellas in the Kinfairlie Tales series
• three more Dragons of Incendium stories, starting with Wyvern’s Wizard
That adds twenty more works, although not all are 100K in length. Am I going to write all of these books? I’m not sure. I should think like a publisher and concentrate on the stories that are going to build my sales.
At a minimum, I see the DragonFate Novels (4 in total), Blood Brothers (3 in total) and Just One Silver Fox (1) for a total of eight books.
I also want to write a spin-off series in the F5F world, set in Harte’s Harbor and beginning with Aidan’s book. This makes sense both creatively and financially, as my contemporary romances sell well and I enjoy writing them. So, I’ll plan for that series to be seven books long, a book every seven months, starting next summer. I’m up to 15 books and my plan carries me into 2025.
What about the other fifteen books out of that thirty? There are lots of candidates. I’ll have to compare results at the end of 2021 and see whether Blood Brothers or DragonFate performed better, then choose between those sub-genres for my 2022 not-contemporary-romance schedule. I’m not looking forward to that decision, but in the meantime, there are plenty of books to be written and published, and I have a plan.