My newest prequel book to the Dragomeir Series is now in the editing process and will be out later this year. It will be the 4th book in the prequel series – Daughter of the Dark Lord – which can all be found on my website –www.solitaireparke.com.
When you finish reading the last book in a series – one that you just couldn’t put down – it would often be amazing to find out the stories behind the story. What were the circumstances in the past that contributed to, or carved out the personalities of the characters we either fell in love with, hated, or never even knew existed? Generally, a prequel provides the reader with new or expanded information on a story line that was important to the original series but perhaps only touched upon.
Yes, I know that over and over again, prequels have messed things up – especially when you’re talking about movies. Prequels can be difficult to write since they have to line-up with already established story lines. But they can be enormously popular as well. You just have to adhere to some guidelines in order to keep your stories straight.
First of all, be sure that your prequel story has a strong enough scope to merit telling. It should be able to stand on its own without relying too heavily on the original story, otherwise it will feel like “more of the same.”
Can you expound on the history of a particular place or answer more in-depth questions about your characters or their families, all without compromising the original story line? There might be an extensive untold backstory that could be important to the original series, that was only previously touched upon. Focus on telling your audience something unknown. In the prequel, you might find pieces of the story or past events that never got a complete or proper explanation, leaving you with questions.
Since the reader knows the outcome of the story, it can be tricky, and you must be careful not to contradict anything said in the original series. After writing thousands of pages, and spending countless hours editing and revising, an author can easily lose track of their own story. The prequel’s job is to fill in gaps and flesh out story lines, answer the unanswered questions, and give some important characters background on their motives for later actions, so a reader going back to the prequel can have that “aha” moment. At the same time, the author has to be careful to keep the essential secrets of the original series.
I would suggest that if you decide to write a prequel, do yourself a favor and scan through the original series before starting and as you go along, to refresh your mind on the world and characters you have created. It might even be wise to compile a database of information from which you can garner information when needed.
Telling a good prequel story is not easy. But if you decide to take on the challenge, these tips might help you stay on track and craft a story that your readers will love!
What are your ideas about prequels?