Book One,Two and Three. Writing a Trilogy

I am just about to start the third book in a trilogy and thought it would be a good time to discuss some of the factors you need to consider when you write trilogies.

Madness, exhaustion, foolhardiness to mention a few.

Vertical stack of three red books isolated over white background. Trilogy
The truth is writing a trilogy can be a wonderful experience. When we write a book we want our readers to fall in love with the characters. We all know what it is like to get to the end of a book and want more. When they know there is a second and a third book they can live with their favorite characters a bit longer.

Some things to be aware of when writing a trilogy

1. Have a book bible. Each of my books is at least 80,000 words in length and I cannot remember everyone’s name or places they visited. Having a list of names is good to make sure you don’t have some that sound similar or they all begin with the same letter. In my first book, all the couples’ names started with the same letter. I had not even been aware I was doing it.

2. Two arcs. You have one arc for the story in the book you are writing. There is a second arc that goes over all the books. Something that happens at the beginning of book one may have a consequence in book three.

3. Plotting. I am a plotter so I tend to write out a chapter plan for a trilogy before I start to write it. Unfortunately, for me, my characters decide to do things that are not in the plan. I was sure in one of my books that someone had died in book one, only to have him still alive in book two.

4. Foreshadowing. I mentioned the three book arc earlier. Remember that it is important to not add something completely new in book three that will solve all the problems you have created. Your readers will feel cheated if you suddenly bring in a something you have not mentioned before. They have been reading your books and trying to put together all the puzzle pieces. If you throw in something else they will want to know why you did not mention it before.

5. Each books job. Book one is the teaser to get them into the story. Book two is the connection between book one and two and fills out the background and worldbuilding. Book three is the conclusion and the way to wrap everything up.

So how do you go about writing a trilogy?

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Book Three, Lost Protector is a work in progress at the moment.

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6 Responses to Book One,Two and Three. Writing a Trilogy

  1. Anne says:

    Love your first book and half way through your second:)
    My CPs and I are editing my third book of a trilogy and YES….maddening is the word!
    Excellent post:)

  2. kathybryson says:

    Plotting, plotting, plotting! My notes went to 2 spreadsheets to keep track of the separate arcs and overall arc. But it was worth it! Looking forward to reading your 3rd!

  3. My book three is about to be published (also a stand-alone) and if I didn’t have those character, place, trait, lists I’d of shot myself. Great advice!
    Good luck,
    Tema Merback
    Writing as Belle Ami
    The One (The Only One) #1
    The One & More (The Only One) #2
    Coming 2016 – One More Time is Not Enough (The Only One) #3
    http://bookshow.me/TheOne
    http://bookshow.me/TheOneAndMore
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/belle.ami.96?fref=ts
    Twitter: @BelleAmi5
    Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/belleami96/
    Website: http://belleami.us

  4. Beth Carter says:

    I’m embarking on book 2 for Coconuts and am not sure how many I’ll have (probably three). I did fill out forms for each character, but alas, they’re back in Missouri and I’m in Florida. Ack. And I’m a pantser!! Nice post.

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