How Long Are You Willing to Wait Between Book Releases in a Series?

I’m having something of a dilemma, and I would like your help figuring out the best course of action.

Warning: this post contains spoilers.

The Wyoming Series has an overall plot that covers the entire series.

So far, this is what I’ve done in this series. I’ve finished The Outlaw’s Bride, and I started The Rancher’s Bride.

The Outlaw's Bride ebook cover2Β  The Rancher's Bride ebook cover 2

I typically make the series plot low key when I write them. In this case, the series plot is more center stage.

Here is the series plot:

The villain is currently in possession of Wade’s ranch. The villain also has Wade’s two-year-old son as a hostage. This is where we are at when we begin Book 1. From Book 1 to Book 3, the plan is to rescue the boy and get the ranch back.

Without trying to give too much away, this is the series format:

Book 1: The goal is to get the boy away from the villain. Mic and Lillian (hero and heroine of this book) help in this pursuit, but I don’t go into what happens with the boy because that is a big part of Book 2. I also leave a couple of other minor things up in the air because these come into play in the rest of the series.

Book 2: Abby (heroine of this book) has the boy, and her main goal is to reunite the boy with his father (Wade). She is injured, however, and needs to stay for a while with the hero of this book (Thayne). This ends up happening by the end of this book.

Book 3: Wade (hero of this book) has his son back, and now it’s time for him to take back his ranch. This is accomplished by the end of this book with the help of the heroine of this book.

I’m thinking a Book 4 would be necessary to successfully wrap up this series. It depends on how the series plot is flowing. I may or may not get the villain behind bars or send him to the cemetery. It’s too early to tell what will happen. But the villain will be brought to justice by the end of the series plot.

As an aside, let me make it clear that each book features a specific romance plot.

Book 1: Lillian is on her way to her mail-order husband when Mic intervenes. He says he’s there to save her from marrying the wrong man, and part of this will require her to marry him. Does she agree and go with him, and if so, will he give her the happy ending she longs for?

Book 2: Abby is injured and has lost her way to get the boy to his father. She ends up at Thayne’s ranch, and she’s forced to stay there while her injuries heal. Unfortunately, he has a ranch hand and a couple of other men coming by who knows she has the boy. She’s fallen in love with Thayne, but it might be too dangerous for her to give into her feelings, so she has to make the decision between bringing him into the dangerous situation she’s in or letting him go.

Book 3: I haven’t started this book yet, so I’m not clear on the actual plot of this one, but there will be a plot where Wade finds love with the heroine of this book. I won’t know the details of this until I’m writing it.

Book 4: If I wrote this, it would involve another hero and another heroine and how they fall in love.

So in a nutshell: The books are independent as far as the romance is concerned, but they are intimately connected in relation to the boy, the ranch, and bringing the villain to justice. This would be one series best read in order because you’ll miss something if you jump ahead.

Now for my dilemma:

I can’t afford to sit and wait to write each of these books and then publish all of the books at once. I need to publish enough books every year to supplement my husband’s income. My five-year goal is to be free from the burden of needing my writing income in order to make ends meet around my house.

I have two choices at this juncture.

1. Publish Book 1 in January, Book 2 this summer, Book 3 this fall/winter, and maybe Book 4 in early 2021.

2. Drop the series completely. I can’t guarantee I’ll come back to this series. I don’t know what will happen in the future.

My question to you:

Are you okay with waiting months between each book’s release?

OR

Will you be upset if you can’t get all of the books at once?

******

I’m going to tally up the responses I get. If it’s 50/50, I’ll drop the series. There has to be a significant percentage of people who are fine with waiting for me to continue with this series in order for me to go through with it. I already did something where half the people were upset with a decision I made, and I vowed to never go through that again. So that’s why I’m coming to you today asking for your input.

About Ruth Ann Nordin

Ruth Ann Nordin mainly writes historical western romances and Regencies. From time to time, she branches out to contemporaries romances and other genres (such as science fiction thrillers). For more information, please go to www.ruthannnordin.com or check out https://ruthannnordinauthorblog.wordpress.com.
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31 Responses to How Long Are You Willing to Wait Between Book Releases in a Series?

  1. Bonnie Schuster says:

    I can wait, I don’t need them back to back! πŸ˜ƒ

  2. Tough decision. I guess it depends on the book series and how much in love I am with it.

  3. Sandra Clay says:

    Write the series. I can wait and want to know what happens to Wade and the boy!

  4. Olivia says:

    I can wait. πŸ™‚

  5. Cindy says:

    Okay with me if you have to wait in between. There are only so many hours in a day and by waiting, you will be able to focus more on the story at hand. You have a life outside of writing and you can’t please everyone. Do what you can when you are able. I look forward to future stories. God Bless You!

  6. Having the books come out with a few months between gives me something to look forward to. You also have to do what is best for your family.

  7. ebooksbypaula73 says:

    Definitely keep them coming. Look at the Harry Potter Series and the movies along with the prequels, not to mention the Star Wars series. Look at the time their audience had to wait. The readers that love your books will be open to waiting. I know I don’t mind. (If this post works, then I think I just figured out how to “like” your posts!)

    • I’ve waited for long periods of time for movies, too. Those are good examples of how long fans had to wait for the next in the series to come out. I think it’s different for books because with authors publishing their own books, they’re able to get things out faster than publishers. Unfortunately, we’re now in a stage of indie publishing where it seems to be the norm to publish books in a series close together so now that is the expectation. I’ve never been able to work on an entire series at a time. I have no way of knowing what will happen in Book 2 until I finish Book 1. Too many variables are up in the air while I’m writing, and that’s whether I try to plot the story out in advance or not. I can write more than one book at a time, but it has to be in a book in a different series. That’s why I alternate so much between series. I have tried focusing on one book and getting it quickly done, but I typically get stuck somewhere and need to put the book aside for a couple of weeks. Being able to work on the other books helps to make up for the time I’m stuck on that particular book.

  8. Shelley Chastagner says:

    It sounds like you’ve got so good feedback. I’m interested in seeing how many more chime in.

    • I’m taking these in with what people are saying on Facebook. The more input I have, the better. Right now it’s looking like 12:5 (willing to wait: not willing to wait). I’d like a bigger sample to go by because this is pretty close from a statistical standpoint.

  9. Glenda says:

    My preference is to want to read the books right after one another. If it is a new series it is unusual to have them all available at the same time. In that case I usually go ahead and buy them but read the first book again before I read the second book

    • Some authors have the ability to wait and publish an entire series at once or stack new releases close together. I’m not in the position where I can do this. I’m also not the kind of writer who can write one book at a time, which would enable me to focus on one series at a time. Some authors are able to write a book in 1-2 weeks, and they can quickly go onto the next book in the series. If I were like them, it would take me 1.5 to 2 months to finish the series. Some editors can work within a week on a series. This is how some authors are able to get things out quickly. I, however, have never been able to work like that. πŸ™‚ I’m very glad you’re willing to purchase each book as it comes out.

  10. Shannon Sullivan says:

    I’m willing to wait between books as long as I know and can see the publish date of the other book

    • Do you need to know the exact date or is an estimate okay? For example, I often say something like the next book will be out in the Summer of 2020.

      I do put pre-orders up on Apple, Kobo, and B&N far in advance where I can give a specific date, but I don’t put anything up on Amazon or Google Play until I have the book finished. Amazon has messed up pre-orders in the past when authors have put up pre-orders before the book was completed. I don’t want to run into issues with Amazon or Google Play, so I wait until about 1-2 months out before putting pre-orders up over there.

      Sometimes I’m able to move the pre-order date up, but there have been a couple of times I had to push it back (due to family or health issues I didn’t expect). That’s why I give the estimate until the book is actually finished and ready to go. If I publish The Outlaw’s Bride in January, it’s impossible for me to give a specific date on when The Rancher’s Bride will be out. Right now, I’m saying Summer of 2020.

  11. Stephannie says:

    I’m willing to wait for each book in the series to come out when they come out. I’ve waited years for some authors to publish the next book in a series. πŸ˜€

  12. Sara says:

    I can wait for each book to come out. I would rather wait and have a quality story then have the author feel rushed to get a book out.

    • I’d rather write a quality story. My plan was to put the entire series in my folder and move onto other stories if most people didn’t want to wait. I’ve rushed books before and had to rewrite them. It never pays to rush a book. πŸ™‚

  13. Gail Kiefer Palmere says:

    I can wait for each book. I love your books, and I don’t want you to scrub the books. I always look forward to one of your books whenever they come out.

  14. mooreshawna says:

    I will wait however long needed when it is an author and series I enjoy. I have loved all your western historical romance books so far therefore I can only assume I will love this series. So, please write the series!

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