Sneak Peak

I’m currently working on the sequel to Mayhem at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort. Let me tell you, sequels are tricky. At least this one is for me. It’d sure save me a lot of time and consternation if everyone would just read book one.

How much backstory do I need to give? How do I tell folks what happened in book one without boring them to death in book two? I’ve considered writing a prologue, but I’m not a huge prologue fan. It’s not that I’m anti-prologue; I just become annoyed when I have to read one.

I’ve read a great many books that are parts of a series. Some authors do an incredible job of filling in backstory and others, even good authors, sometimes offer too much, assuming that readers haven’t read the previous books in the series. I’m hoping my editor helps me figure out the right combination.

Anyway, I titled this “Sneak Peak” for a reason. Here’s a little tidbit from Wedding at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort. Let me know what you think—it’s still very much a work in progress.

Sneak Peak of Wedding at the Happy Valley Motor Inn and Resort:

Mark walked Paula to her room. The tequila she’d imbibed at dinner emboldened her enough to rise up on her tiptoes to give him a hug.

He grinned. “What was that for?”

“Just because I wanted to,” she said. Then she wobbled and frowned. “I probly should’ve stopped at one margarita, though.”

Mark smiled down at her. “I’m glad you didn’t if it meant getting a hug. Goodnight. Sleep tight.”

She waved a hand in the air as Mark turned and began walking the few steps to his room “Don’t let the bug beds bite. Wait, the beg buds. That’s not it either. Just don’t let anything bite.”

Paula fumbled with her room key, and the old-fashioned plastic green fob slipped from her fingers where it clattered as it bounced off the porch. The noise brought Mark back to her side.

“Whoopsie!” She said.

“Here, let me.” He picked up the key and unlocked her door, his head nearly touching hers as he bent to the task. “I’d really like to kiss you right now.”

She put a finger to her lips. “Shh! Don’t tell anyone, but I’d really like to be kissed right now.”

“You’re a little drunk, though, and I’m not going to take advantage of that, but tomorrow, all bets are off.”

Paula grinned a silly grin and began humming the tune Tomorrow from the musical Annie.

He pecked her on the cheek and opened the door. “Goodnight, again. I’m right next door if you need me.”

“And I’m right next door if you need me,” she said, poking a finger in the general direction of his chest.

She thought she heard him chuckle as she locked the door behind her. The room seemed to be off-kilter, and she had to concentrate to make everything stay still. As Paula meandered to the bathroom she picked up the lyrics where she’d left off. “I,” she hiccuped. “Love ya’….”

Peace, people.

Author: nananoyz

I'm a semi-retired crazy person with one husband and two cats.

23 thoughts on “Sneak Peak”

  1. I would start with , ..what info do they HAVE to have to make book 2 not feel incomplete , and piss them off. I actually like throwback chapters that bring me up to speed, to the plot ending , your writing style and rhythm, and what person you are writing in. Landmarks, dead characters, heros and other info can be inferred or just exposed…….writing is gold….first you have to tee it up….then…let er rip !

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think the sequel title gives too much away. Anyone who read the original wanted it to end with Mark and Paula together but it was too soon, right?
    It’s fine for that to happen but I want see what develops before they make a lifetime commitment!
    Again, don’t give it away…unless, of course, you’ve got an unexpected surprise …

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I practiced this on a blog where I wrote chapter by chapter (before turning it into a book). Because you have to assume readers of blogs don’t necessarily read in order, you have to inject some short sentences that give enough back story but doesn’t detract from the current story. This is really tricky, but with practice (14 chapters) I think I may have figured out a way to do this.

    Good luck! I am looking forward to the sequel, I feel attached to the characters in your first book. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I’ve asked myself the same question. The events in book two are certainly predicated on what happened in book one, but ultimately I’d hope both books could both stand on their own.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Looks like I’m about to get lucky with Paula! Hot damn!!

    I’ve resisted the urge to write a sequel (though I’ve been tempted) for the very reasons you mention. How much exposition do you need? Can the story work as a standalone? I’m very tempted to revisit my characters though, and have a rough outline of a follow-up. I’ll have to figure out whether or not I’m willing to commit here soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It is a major peeve of mine when an author rehashes all the history from previous books in their new books. I’m fine with reminders of events, that often even helps with the story flow, but full on summaries that take up a ton of page space drives me up a wall. One author I used to like, but quit reading had something like 2 chapters worth of summary of all the previous books, the same kinds of summary that was in EVERY book, at about book 6 and I had to call it done. I’ve refused to read anything new by them since. A book in the middle of the series is not a stand alone. Anyone that comes along and picks it up without having read the previous books shouldn’t feel they can just follow along without getting lost. Boring your established readers with a ton of detailed rehashings is kind of a deterrent for me to pick up the next book in the series. It is a balancing act, though. Not everyone feels the same, so it is hard to find where you want to fall in that range of too little or too much.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have encountered the same thing from otherwise really good authors. The one I’m thinking of is extremely popular as a romance writer, but it’s the series she writes under a pseudonym that began to annoy me when she rehashed the MC’s past every single time. It was like “enough already.” This post has given me much to think about.

      Liked by 1 person

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