Friday, September 23, 2016
The Firsts & Forever Series Continues
Since I'm often asked how many books I'm planning to write in the Firsts & Forever Series, I thought I should talk about that here on my blog.
There's no set number to the series, no plan I'm working from that tells me: X number of books by so-and-so date, with these main characters. Instead, the series has evolved organically, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
With each new book, supporting characters step out of the shadows and call not only to me, but to my readers. It's always pretty obvious who's jumping out at you guys and who'll be the main character in future books, because I get flooded with emails and private messages that say, "Will this guy get a story?" or "I need to know what happens with this character!" It's almost always the same characters that are yelling at me to write them, so it works out pretty well. :)
It amazes me, the way the Firsts and Forever Series has taken on a life of its own. I wrote Way Off Plan (Jamie's story) in 2012 with a vague hope that it would evolve into a series, but I was a very new writer back then and didn't have any real clue about what it took to build a series. So, I did what I continue to do to this day: I let the characters guide me. It's worked out remarkably well.
So, how long will I keep the series going? As long as writing it remains a joy for me, and as long as the books continue to be successful. I'm really lucky. Every book in the series has done as well as, or better than, the books before it, and all have reached the top spots in gay fiction and gay romance on Amazon. I don't mention that as a, "Yay me," but to illustrate my point that the series is alive and well, so ending it would make no sense. It would be like cancelling a popular TV show "just because."
Even now, four years down the road, I'm excited to write this series and these characters, and I have so many plans for our Firsts and Forever family (and that's what they feel like to me, after all this time). I'm currently writing the 13th book in the series and thoroughly enjoying the process! It's Sawyer and Alastair's story, and it's called Worlds Away. I'm hoping to release it before the end of the year. I'm also planning on a novella told from Dante's perspective, which wraps up the arson investigation that began in The Distance (Jessie's story, book 11). It should be out in early 2017.
Are some readers going to burn out after 13+ books? Sure, it's inevitable. But new readers keep discovering the series all the time, and I have a loyal reader base that keeps asking for more (I'm so incredibly grateful for every single one of you)! For those readers, and for me, this series will live on well into the future. <3