Novel writing in sequels allows two major ways to plot your story. 1) In a sequel, you can have the main characters joined by a few new characters, and they solve a new unrelated crime (usually unrelated). 2) You can have your main characters, joined by any amount of new ones, who solve an unrelated crime, but the main characters’ lives continue developing into the new sequel.
Sara Mason Mysteries Book Two
by Mary Deal
Many new characters entered The Howling Cliffs, which is the 1st sequel to River Bones, the original Sara Mason Mystery story.
The plot for Howling Cliffs opens with Sara Mason and Huxley Keane deep in the Vietnam jungle searching for MIA remains. As mentioned in 2) in the first paragraph above, the lives of the characters come forward even though a new crime will be solved. Given that in River Bones Huxley Keane was only mentioned as looking for his MIA brother, I fell in love with his character and wanted to bring his life forward.
After their time in the Vietnam jungle, Sara gets involved in a missing child cold case on the island of Kauai where she has bought a house. That home is to be used by veterans as they cross back and forth over the Pacific between Vietnam and the Mainland. So, this story is peopled with Hawaiian characters. Novel writing allows your mind to wander in any direction your Muse choose to go.
See if you can spot the few characters from River Bones.
MEN’S NAMES - Vietnam and Kauai
FORENSIC DOG'S NAMES
Novel writing allows your Muse to take a story in any direction and it may surprise you. It’s fiction, so there is nothing that holds you to certain facts. However, writing true facts into your fiction, if it fits well, gives novel writing a sense of reality. Creating exciting characters is fun too, but remember to make their names fit the story, the locale and the culture. Give your Muse free reign and your novel writing will surprise you.