Tag Archive for: sequels

Fall! Bombs Away!

 by Bethany Maines

Does anyone else feel like Fall just hit with a sledgehammer?  The weather shifted, everything started getting colder and book release dates started cropping up faster than weeds in my lawn. Our own Debra Sennefelder put out the fashion / Halloween themed mystery What Not to Wear to a Graveyard (see her post here) and we’re celebrating the late summer releases of Debra Goldstein’s latest Three Treats Too Many and our new author Gay Yellen with Body Business.

My next book releases in October, but that just means that all the marketing is happening now, now, now (use your used car salesman voice for the last part). Marketing for most authors, including me, is a somewhat painful process in which we attempt to interest the greatest number of people in our precious book baby. The Cinderella Secret is book 2 (of 4) in my Deveraux Legacy series. With a series, book 1 sets the tone and while marketing can be increased for subsequent books – if an author did a terrible job on book 1 then book 2 doesn’t have much of a chance. This kind of high-stakes “hope you got it right” marketing pressure is what drives many authors to hate marketing.  We’re already responsible for inventing these characters, putting them through hell, hopefully letting some of them make it out with a happy ending, and now we’re responsible for making them a success in the world?  It’s too much! My poor babies deserve more!  But of course, we saddle up and go out there and do our best for our imaginary book friends because we really do love them. Fortunately, it is a bit easier with assistance from friends, marketing professionals, and having some pretty sweet giveaways and incentives in my back pocket. 

Here’s what’s going on with The Cinderella Secret!

The Cinderella Secret: Hot-shot lawyer Aiden Deveraux holds the key to unlocking the dark secrets of Ella Zhao’s past and Ella holds the key to Aiden’s heart. But a murderer wants to stop those secrets from ever seeing the light of day and Aiden and Ella may have to trust each other with their secrets if they want to make it out of this fight alive.

Release Date: 10.19.20

Pre-Order now from iBooks for ¢.99!  (Price goes up after release week!) Buy here →
Have a netgalley account and want to get an advance copy? Blogger/Reader Sign-Up → https://bit.ly/ReleasePromotionTheCinderellaSecret

Want to win an e-copy and a $40 Amazon giftcard? Enter to win → http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/2a9f3a7480/

Want to get the Deveraux Legacy prequel novella, The Lost Heir, for FREE? Learn how →

Bethany Maines is the award-winning author of the Carrie Mae Mysteries, San Juan Islands Mysteries, Shark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous
short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some
serious butt with her black belt in karate, she can be found chasing her
daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel. You can also catch up with her on Twitter, FacebookInstagram, and BookBub.

Shark’s Hunt

by Bethany Maines

Yesterday was the release day for the third novel in my
Shark Santoyo Series – Shark’s Hunt.  The
series is a cross between Veronica Mars and Goodfellas. It’s got violence (but no gore, I don’t do
gore), humor, mystery and a hero and heroine who might be smarter than everyone
else, but still might not be smart enough to get themselves out of
trouble.  While each book follows a new
adventure there is an overarching plot through the series that has been tricky
to plot and fulfill in each new book. 
The document that tracks my timeline is now multiple pages and the
spreadsheet of characters is extensive as I have to track who lives and dies
(and when) as well as their various affiliations. Writing this series has been an adventure and I hope
that the readers enjoy it with me.

SHARK’s INSTINCT (#1) – $1.99: https://amzn.to/2W7Wx48
SHARK’S BITE (#2) – $2.99: https://amzn.to/2KUEmOt
SHARK’S HUNT (#3) – $2.99: https://amzn.to/2W4Hf0m

Also available to be read on Kindle Unlimited.


by Bethany Maines
Recently, I was discussing series and sequels with another
writer.  The general question was how to
connect an overarching story to an individual story.  If the books plotline makes sense how do I
add in the greater plotline without frustrating the reader with not enough
answers, or annoying them with too many threads that don’t pertain to the
current story?  As we hashed through how to accomplish this we agreed that previous generations of
writer’s didn’t have as much expectation to connect their sequels or series.
No one expected any of Jane Austen’s characters to pop up in
her other books or link to each other to create an “Austen Universe.”  Hercule Poirot went on mystery after mystery,
but his character didn’t evolve enormously and there was no evil mastermind to
hunt book after book.  Even in the pulp
era, Tarzan went on adventure after adventure, making incremental progress in
his character development, until eventually we just had the Son of Tarzan because
there was nothing else left.
The idea of a long running story arc seems more specifically
tied to television and serial movies. 
And with the rise of streaming television and binge-watching it seems
more prevalent than ever.  When I can
watch an entire seasons worth of TV at once I don’t have to worry that
questions won’t get answered or miss the little clues from three weeks
ago.  The advent of streaming television
has made it easier for TV writers to include a “Big Bad” for the season or to
have episodes that don’t include a “villain of the week.”  But novels don’t have the luxury of releasing
all at once.  It’s very difficult to
hoard up enough material to release like that for one thing.  And most writers can’t write at a pace that
would produce quality sequels in a short span of time. But it seems clear that desire for that kind of material is there.

My Shark Santoyo Crime Series is an experiment in this over-arching
story line and as we lead up to the release of Shark’s Hunt (#3) on April 23rd
I find myself wondering if readers will enjoy the progression.  I’m excited to have the next “episode” out in
the hands of readers.  Hopefully, they
stick around for part four.
Bethany Maines
is the author
of the Carrie Mae Mystery Series, San Juan Islands Mysteries, Shark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous
short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some
serious butt with her fifth degree black belt in karate, she can be found
chasing her daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel. You
can also catch up with her on
YouTube, Twitter
and Facebook