Book Two: The Ins and Outs of the Sequel


image of the Surreal Estate Book Cover

Surreal Estate – this captivating thriller, was a collaboration with Sugar and Mark Graham Communications

So you’ve written a book. Congratulations! It’s out in the world, and the reception has been positive. It’s so positive, in fact, that you might be thinking about a sequel.

What is a sequel? Simply put, a sequel is a subsequent book featuring characters, circumstances, and/or topics already familiar to readers of the first book. This could mean a continuation of the original story—i.e., the second, third, and subsequent books in a series. However, a sequel might also build upon the original theme but use new circumstances or material. For example, in fiction, a sequel might focus on a much-loved secondary character from the first novel. A second memoir might be about the same individual, this time overcoming different obstacles than in the first book. For business books, a sequel might build on the business advice offered in the first book, perhaps addressing a more specific audience or taking an alternative approach to the professional challenges discussed in the first book.

For authors with ideas for a second book, the biggest question about writing a sequel might be when to do it. In our experience, particularly for ghostwritten books, the best time is as soon after the first book comes out as possible.

Why? Consider the following:

  • Readers are hungry for more. You put a lot of work into promoting your first book. You likely have spent marketing dollars, and you’ve certainly invested a great deal of time. Reviews have come in, emails arrived in your inbox, and you’re starting to build a fan base. All of this means that the time to get another book in your readers’ hands is now—as soon as possible.
  • The material is fresh in your mind. You spent considerable time on your first book. If you worked with a ghostwriter, you know the process is time-intensive, but the more you and your ghostwriter “lived” in the story, the more both of you discovered about the book’s theme, structure, primary players, and other narrative elements. In the sequel, you can build on this. In many cases, you’re able to work with the same ghostwriter, ensuring a smooth process with a known professional.
  • Sequels build credibility. Even if it’s successful, a single book (in any genre) can feel to the reading public as if it might be a fluke. Readers are more likely to trust authors who have published more than one work. Your second book (and subsequent books) show your audience that you’re serious and passionate about your genre and the topics you write about.

If you’re thinking about having a sequel ghostwritten (whether you worked with Mark Graham Communications for your previous book(s) or not), please get in touch. We’d love to discuss the project and help you get that next book into your readers’ hands as soon as possible.