Previous Books : Dark Game
Genre: Crime, Thriller, Police Procedural
Release Date: 21st May 2018
Available in ebook
My thanks to Ellie of Canelo for the tour invitation and to Rachel for providing the guest post.
Writing a Sequel
By Rachel Lynch
The dreaded sequel.
Publication day arrives and it’s a mixture of apprehension and delight. A whole world of characters has come to life and their world is being explored by readers lured by the promise of a brand new detective series. It’s well received and the five star ratings roll in.
But now you’ve got to write number two.
One might assume that writing two books isn’t that different to writing one book. The rules are the same, it’s just words after all, and it has a beginning a middle and an end. The setting is established, the stars of the show are confirmed, and the parameters of the genre have been adhered to. But then the realisation sets in that, not only will readers want more of the same, they also want it to deliver punches of the same calibre that wowed them in the first place. It’s a tall order.
Readers have already carved out their relationships with the main characters and expectation runs high. It’s the same but different. In a sequel, the story needs to move on, the personalities need to develop, the plot has to be just as clever but also fresh; it’s got to work harder.
What defined the debut and endeared a following must remain, but it also has to deliver new twists and turns aimed at retaining interest and leaving fans breathless for number three, and number four…
After the fantastic reception of Dark Game, I knew I had a weighty task ahead, and in Deep Fear, there were certain rules I set out for myself.
Kelly is the keystone holding up the series; her indomitable spirit, her integrity, her tenacity and her stormy personal life all provide the guts to her investigations. It’s true; she could probe any quandary facing the Cumbria constabulary, and come out on top, but it’s her essence that needs to remain. The studio in which she works- her exhibition hall- remains the same: the staggering mystery and hidden beauty of the Lake District is timeless and provides the backdrop to all her enquiries. Everything else needed to move forward: her relationship with Johnny, the development of her trusty team, the sparks between her and her sister (refereed by her mother) and how she continues to fit in to her old life (or not) were all required to grow and progress.
It took a few re-writes.
The investigation itself in Deep Fear was already secure in my head, but I had to focus on staying true to the habits, choices and peculiarities of my leading names, and this was a learning curve all on its own. Theoretically there should be fewer restraints on characters already alive, right? But one can never assume that the books will be read in order. So snippets and references to book one are essential but can’t ever be forced. It’s more a kind of evolution, with both books remaining unique.
It’s a weighty responsibility, as the last thing I want to do is break the trust and belief I’ve already built up with Dark Game. Too many times, I’ve looked forward to the second book in a series with baited breath, almost beside myself theorising about what might happen to my favourite characters, only to be let down with repetition and flat predictability. It’s an emotional journey and one that burns throughout each book (I’m writing number four at the moment). I’ve come to treat each book as a separate cake but with similar ingredients: the same rules of baking apply but independent elements are being celebrated and developed. Think Bake Off for books. Each episode has a different flavour, but at the end of the day, it’s Kelly who’s in the tent.
| About the Book |
DI Kelly Porter is back. But will this new case push her beyond her limits?
On a peaceful summer’s morning in the Lake District, a woman’s body is discovered outside a church. She’s been murdered and a brutal, symbolic act performed on her corpse. DI Kelly Porter is in charge of the team investigating the crime, and is determined to bring the killer to justice. But as more deaths occur it is clear this is the work of a disturbed, dangerous and determined individual. Can Kelly put the puzzle pieces together before the danger comes closer to home?
Don’t miss this gripping crime thriller featuring an unforgettable detective. Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Patricia Gibney and Robert Bryndza.
| Author Bio |
Rachel Lynch grew up in Cumbria and the lakes and fells are never far away from her. London pulled her away to teach History and marry an Army Officer, whom she followed around the globe for thirteen years. A change of career after children led to personal training and sports therapy, but writing was always the overwhelming force driving the future. The human capacity for compassion as well as its descent into the brutal and murky world of crime are fundamental to her work.