Maybe don’t try to publish book one until you’re done the series.

Brandon Sanderson didn’t. Thank you for coming to my TED talk.

But seriously, think about maybe don’ting. When I started Kakotopia I thought, oh, good. A stand alone novel about space pirates. And then the end of the book came and went without space pirates. But I didn’t worry. I’ll just write a prequel, I thought, easy peasy, that sets up the space piracy, and then book three of this very complete trilogy will be all space pirating, all the time.

I’ll just name this protagonist “Jimny Whisperer the Seventh.” What could possibly go wrong?

Jimny Whisperer the not even having a rank yet showed up. But because none of the books are beholden to anyone, I can seed ideas in this first book all the way down to the final all space pirating, all the time book.

But a book already in the publishing process is set. Everything from it can only be greater than those particular parts. I think if some of the best advice you can give a writer is to let the individual work sit for six months to a year while you do something else, imagine how tightly fit together a series would be if given that much time to complicate and mature?

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