This was the final panel I attended at the convention. As someone who has actually started eight novels, including a sequel in a planned trilogy, I thought it would be really interesting to find out how others found writing after their first one.
Panellists were: Mark Barnes, Laure Eve, Snorri Kristjansson, Alison Littlewood, Lou Morgan, and Den Patrick.
– The first book is generally for you. The second is likely not; you have six months to complete a second one in the deal.
– It’s terrifying in that this one will definitely be read by people.
– It can be easier as you already know what it’s kind of all about. But the deadlines require prioritising!
– You have to worry about continuity aspects for things ___ years later.
– Writing the second book really shows you issues from book one you didn’t notice.
– You have reviews which challenge you to be better. Even those reviews where you can say “No, that’s wrong” are helpful because they give you conviction in your work. Having a first book out there gives you more confidence in your writing ability anyway.
– It’s better to have a recap in book two. It’s better than prior readers can skim/skip it than have new readers be completely lost.
– Like Pearl Jam, release 3 means 2 makes more sense. Same with book 2 for book 1, in theory.
– And the final thought:
“Velociraptors are party guys – they hang around in threes.”
That means there’s a difference between writing a novel and telling a story.
Don’t ask me why I’ve written those two comments together; they obviously linked at the time.
And that was the end of the convention panels for me. I headed to the bar, in theory, for a few last hours just because it would be a waste to miss any last minute opportunities.