I have a disease. It’s called series-itis. My friend and the person who reads my novels as I write them tells me I need to get over it, but I just can’t seem to help myself.
What is this disease, you ask? Series-itis is when you’re a writer and every time you write a novel, you come away with ideas in how to make it a series. You come out with story lines of friends, siblings, children, etc.
The first novel I ever tried to write back when I was in middle school started it all. I had an idea for a generational series. I loved history and at the time wanted to write historical fiction. (Now, I am too afraid of being historically inaccurate to attempt historicals, but maybe some day I’ll get over my history minor). The idea was inspired by this book: http://www.amazon.com/Wakefield-Legacy-Sweet-Valley-High/dp/0553297945/ref=pd_sim_b_1#reader_0553297945 (Definitely click the link and check out the cover).
Yes, that’s a Sweet Valley High book. So what? I was in middle school! And honestly, I credit SVH for my beginning love of romances. (I was always cheering for Elizabeth and Todd). (In fact, I am half-tempted to go buy this and see if it’s as good as my thirteen year old self remembers).
Anyway, there it started. I had five stories an 1890s, WWI, WWII, sixties, and finally a ‘contemporary’. Everything I wrote for a good chunk of years was related to that family.
Then my college roommate got me hooked on Nora Roberts and her Macgregor Series. And I began to really see the serial possibility. When I completed a novel for the first time as part of NaNoWriMo 2002, I finished having a head full of stories to write. My hero had three brothers and I had story ideas for two. Then, I had planned out all of the children of these three brothers’ lives as well. I even went further and connected them to a story I had been working on before NaNo, which left me with more children to write about.
From 2002-2010, every novel I completed (6) stemmed from that first novel I completed, overlapping characters and story lines and everything. I’ll go ahead and admit that the medical I just subbed was originally a part of this series as well.
Finally, my friend convinced me. My current WIP has nothing to do with that original family.
Of course, they’re a family all in their own right with their own stories. I’ll try to stick to a trilogy this time though.