Novel writing has a ‘formula’ – though I hate to use that term. There is a flow to the plot that includes increasing tension, minor crises, a major event, and then resolution. Stand-alone novels offer a sense of completion that we don’t see with individual series books.

But a series has a different arc. Each of the plot lines have another dimension beyond each individual book. It weaves through so that the crisis in the final book has a much BIGGER punch than the ones that came before. More is at risk. f you want to be a successful author, you’ve got to write series. So goes the common wisdom. Harry PotterThe Hunger GamesThe Lord of the RingsJack Reacher… all these series have massive commercial appeal.

The secret to writing good stand-alone fiction is to find a unique and unused brand. Lasso one that will capture your reader’s interest then have them looking for more. It is no easy task. However, if your goal is to sell lots of books then write formula novels – please the masses. All you have to do is create a protagonists that possess a high level of emotional intensity that results in gutsy and surprising deeds. Formula fiction is often lumped in with genre fiction while literary fiction is often more serious and does not fit in any genre.

Don’t let stand-alone books fall by the wayside.

Read them, write them, and make sure they still have a place in the future.

We’ll all be better off for it!

All said, not every author was designed to remain within such rigid lines of creativity. Every writer has his own voice and it is becoming more and more popular to sing from more than one song sheet, so to speak, and genre-hop. Bear in mind that you too will be faced with the same task as those publishers who had turned you away. Every book of every genre will require a separate marketing plan in order to get it discovered.

I cannot sing…but my books are eclectic and off-beat.

“Linda has published fifteen books. She blogs about the publishing world, posts useful tips on the challenges a writer faces, including marketing and promoting your work, how to build your online platform, how to get reviews and how to self-publish.”