Saturday, September 27, 2014

What is a Series?

The dictionary that came with my computer says:

series |ˈsi(ə)rēz|
noun ( pl. same)
a number of things, events, or people of a similar kind or related nature coming one after another : the explosion was the latest in a series of accidents | he gave a series of lectures on modern art.
  • [usu. with adj. ] a set of related television or radio programs, esp. of a specified kind : a new drama series.
  • a set of books, maps, periodicals, or other documents published in a common format or under a common title.
and definitions go on from there varying farther from the written word into math and electronics, but you get the idea.

I recently bought three books billed as a series, and I do love a series, otherwise I might not have bought the last two. Now there was nothing really wrong with the books, except that they were way too short for my liking. Anything I can read in an afternoon is too short; I don't get enough time to get to know the characters or get into the story.

These three books did show the progression of a writer; each story far better than the last. They, however, were not a series. There was no connection between the stories other than the country and perhaps time in which they occurred - not the same town - not the same road - not the same characters. There were other issues with these books that won them a less than glowing review, but I have had a favorable discussion with the writer. One must remember not to post a review while we are still pissed off about whatever the issue is.

In our discussion I told him about my three books - no, not my series - my other three books talked about here. The titles of those books have been changed since that post, and I'm not really promoting them as a collection anymore, but they do still take place in the same world, at the same time, and follow the same rules. The third book is still unwritten. I'll get to it one of these days. Just now, I gotta catch up with the timeline on my current work in progress. Major events that happen in this country sometimes have an effect on the happenings in the book. Now don't that sound like fun. Anyway, I'm more than half a year behind on that so I gotta get busy.

So - do you have a series? Or is it more of a collection? What are your definitions?


1 comment:

William Kendall said...

Mine would rate as a series, as the main and supporting characters return, but each would be a self contained narrative.