Team Everybody

As I'm approaching the release of my second novel, I'm attempting to keep my eyes on the writing/ editing/ revising parts of this process, rather than the reviews of Between the Lines. Reviews are important, but when your WIP is a sequel, they're also scary as hell -- because readers have vastly different opinions when it comes to what should happen next. Authors want readers to connect with the story, and the last thing we want is to disappoint those readers.

I'm a reader. So of course I get this. I've been deeply disappointed with a couple of sequels/trilogy wrap-ups that I've read recently. In one of these, I chose the wrong Team. (For the record, that's never happened to me before. If there's a Team to be chosen, I always choose the right Team! I guess it was bound to happen at some point. Dammit.) I left the third book saying out loud, "What the HELL just happened?!?" I was pissed. I felt cheated. I'd stuck with that story through three entire books and that guy ended up with the girl?

This leaves me horrified, knowing that I'm going to give that same feeling to more than a few readers. It's inescapable.

I've been asked a few times whether I'm Team Reid or Team Graham. I know everyone would like an answer (and I think I've even given the expected one once or twice), but honestly, I can't choose between them. I created them both. However, that doesn't mean they get equal treatment.

If you have siblings, did you ever ask your parents who was the favorite? Most parents respond with, "I don't have a favorite! I love you equally." (Because that's what they tell you to say in the Parent Manual.) But there's no such thing as loving equally in this situation. I knew this as a kid. I know this as a parent. And boy, do I know this as an author.

I can tell you this much, though: disregarding a few minor walk-on appearances, the third book will only feature one of the main characters from the first two. Yes, one. I don't have a favorite, but if I did... well. I'll let you decide for yourself.