Fantasy Faction

Fantasy Faction => Fantasy Book & Author Discussion => Topic started by: Lanko on January 05, 2016, 04:58:04 PM

Title: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Lanko on January 05, 2016, 04:58:04 PM
Do you have a preference for this?

After ASOIAF, I'm being careful to not have more unfinished series sitting around, multiplying the feeling "No! When the sequels are coming out!" even if it just one year.

On another side, if I didn't read it because it was so far from being finished, I would have deeply regretted. But then again, I'm kinda new in fantasy. So I'm kinda torn between starting more unfinished series or just wait until it's completed, even if it means taking a lot of time to read something really good, but uninterrupted.

What about you? Are you waiting for multiple sequels? Do you remember them well? Do you reread? What do you do?

Option 1 --> The wait can also give huge expectations (hype?). I guess the longer it is, more awesome it can be if the book fulfills/surpasses your expectations or hugely disappointing as well.

Option 2 --> I guess this depends more on the author's speed. Too long and you probably will read it anyway, specially if everyone is saying it's awesome.

Option 3 --> I guess most of us do this, but is it balanced or you do one more than the other?

What about authors? Do you think they see an increase in sales of the first book when a series is completed because of people who wait until it's finished?
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: night_wrtr on January 05, 2016, 05:25:47 PM
Some books demand to be read! Stormlight and Kingkiller are two of them. I don't really stress over waiting on books, there are always others to read to fill my time. Stormlight I know we will get a book every 1 to 2 years, so not a big deal. Plus Sanderson will put out at least 2 book between those on other series, so it all works out.

The third book in the Kingkiller Chronicles, however, has been making me quite impatient.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Hedin on January 05, 2016, 05:55:50 PM
It really depends on how fast the books come out.  If someone, like Sanderson for example, has a history of putting out books frequently without too much of a delay I have no problems starting the series and waiting for the sequels to come out.  For my favorite authors I don't want to wait a year or two to read their new series, I want it now.

Where I draw the line is with excessive waits.  Martin and Rothfuss fall into these categories (and sadly Lynch might be heading that direction as well for me).  Unfortunately for this you sometimes don't know about the writer's speed when you first start the series so you may be left in limbo for awhile. 
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: ScarletBea on January 05, 2016, 05:57:11 PM
I prefer to wait, or read older series already finished, but since joining F-F I've been reading more first books, especially when they're from relatively new authors.
I've learnt how sales from that first book are essential to their contract continuation, so I try to support that effort.

Examples off the top of my head are Peter Newman's Vagrant and Rebeca Levene's Smiler's Fair, and I don't mind waiting for their next books because they do work well as standalones.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Hedin on January 05, 2016, 06:14:43 PM
I prefer to wait, or read older series already finished, but since joining F-F I've been reading more first books, especially when they're from relatively new authors.
I've learnt how sales from that first book are essential to their contract continuation, so I try to support that effort.

That is something I keep in mind as well.  Plus with a new author on the scene you would think they couldn't delay too much as they aren't as secure as a more established author would be.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: CaitSpivey on January 05, 2016, 06:42:36 PM
I'll read whatever catches my interest or whatever I happen to find in the bookstore, haha. By pure chance, a lot of the book ones I picked up in the last year were to finished or older series--specifically Dragon Keeper of Robin Hobb's Rain Wilds Chronicles and NK Jemisin's The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms. I did just get the sequel to Django Wexler's The Thousand Names, and I'm excited to read book two of that!

I'm also a fantasy author, and it warms my heart to see readers who are aware of how important first-book sales are to the continuation of a series. <3 I'm lucky to be with a small publisher that won't drop me if my book doesn't do well immediately, though of course we all hope it will. But this isn't true of everyone, and not everyone can turn to self-publishing if their sequels don't get optioned by publishers.

On my novella ebook series, which has three out right now, I have seen a small bump in sales for book one when the second and third came out...but that might have been because I made it free, haha.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Yora on January 05, 2016, 06:44:14 PM
I pretty much never get intersted in any fiction before it has gathered a considerable amount of praise and the test of time has proven that it's exceptional and not something that is quickly forgotten. Not as some kind of snobbery, but it's simply that I get curious when I see a work regularly mentioned in positive ways over a longer period of time. So many things get hyped before and during released and many end up being immediately forgotten, but when the praise keeps coming I eventually get curious what all the comotion is about.

With unfinished series nobody actually knows if the overall thing is great or not. When a story spends 90% of it's length setting up lots of great mysteries but the final 10% turn out to be banal and unsatisfying answers to them, then the story as a whole ends up being a disappointment. One bad book does not necessarily make all the previous books bad retroactively, but when the other books in the series where exciting to read primarily or only because the mystery was intriguing then a bad ending ruins the thing as a whole. Just look at the TV shows Lost and Heroes. During the early episodes they were praised as the greatest things ever and then people realized that it's never going anywhere.

To get me to read a series, I need to see reviews of the whole series. Praise for the first or second book is not enough to make me care.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: BeardKing on January 05, 2016, 07:05:35 PM
I'm just like you, Lanko. ASOIAF did the same thing to me. I will only read a series or trilogy that's finished (excluding anything Robin Hobb writes, although I do wait until each trilogy she writes is finished before I start it). Maybe this will change in the future when I start running out of things to read.

As far as ASOIAF goes, I feel like when TWoW is released, I will have lost touch with the rest of the series. I'm a daily Redditor and I see people discussing theories and characters that I can barely remember. I'd rather that not happen. So, I'll only read a finished series/trilogy.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: DrNefario on January 05, 2016, 07:19:26 PM
I feel like my life would be poorer if I had not read any of ASOIAF or any Pat Rothfuss.

It can be frustrating to wait for the next episode, but there are plenty of other books I can be getting on with.

If those series were never finished, or went horribly off the rails, I'd still be pretty happy with what I did get.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: ultamentkiller on January 05, 2016, 10:32:10 PM
I'll read whatever catches my eye. I have no problem if it's a complete series or not. I love speculating within the fandoms about what's going to happen next. I love being able to reread a book in a series and say, "Yeah, I remember what point I was in my life then." And, when you're reading a series over time, I feel a deeper attachment to the characters. With something that's complete, I'll most likely never reread it. But with unfinished works, I can look forward to going back, and the characters stick in my mind.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Revan on January 05, 2016, 11:57:45 PM
I started reading fantasy with A Song of Ice and Fire and The Kingskiller Chronicles. Now, a few years later, I am still waiting.

So, not a big fan of starting series that won't be finished for another 2 decades. Which is why I have avoided Lynch and Bakker so far. And the Stormlight Archive.

On the other side, I don't mind sagas that are going on but that you have pretty much a guaranteed book every year or so. Like the Expanse from Abraham and Franck. Or everything Joe Abercrombie writes.

But, if I know that the saga won't be finished for an another decade or two, it is very likely that I will look for other books. Especially where there are so many great books right there which I have yet to read. On the other side, if I know that it will finish in the next 5 years or so, it won't be a problem to start it.

PS: The other problem is that some series might start brilliantly and then quickly turn out to shit. Like Raven's Shadow. I heard a lot of praise for Blood Song and when I read it, I said that the praise was really fair. Definitely loved it. Then the sequel was just okay, but the third book, the conclusion, was a total abomination. So, reading finished sagas help on that aspect. If you know that a saga goes to shit, then no point reading it even if it has a great start.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: CryptofCthulhu on January 06, 2016, 11:21:45 AM
I just started ASoIaF a couple months ago because I was putting off watching any of the Game of Thrones TV shows after the first season. I've finished the second book and then watched the second season.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Captain Blobby on January 06, 2016, 11:44:45 AM
I don't mind starting an unfinished series. I primarily read for entertainment (like everyone else?) so if the first book fails I just won't pick up the second.

One thing I quite like is what Mark Lawrence has in his books where there's a summary of the previous novel.

In twenty years time when ASOIAF 6 is out I would probably veer towards reading a plot summary of the previous books rather than re-read them.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Elfy on January 06, 2016, 11:53:29 PM
There was a point where I said I wouldn't start unfinished series, but it didn't last very long. That's possibly partly because as a reader of fantasy I wouldn't read much current stuff if I only went for standalone and completed series. What bugs me is if I happen to come across the 2nd or 3rd book in a series and it interests me, then I can't find the first one.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Nox on January 07, 2016, 11:47:54 AM
I actually only read finished stuff and that's not just reading either. I will watch TV Shows as series and movie trilogies(or more-ogies) once they're all done and not before.


The only exception being things that are basically ongoing indefinitely, such as sitcoms.


Thing is, my interests grasp almost all media and there's a lot of finished stuff so I see no reason to start something I can't finish if I so wish.


Things also tend to finish while I finish the finished stuff and then I can move on and finish the newly finished things while yet more things finish themselves. Ouroboros.


Ah, ware I a Finnish Fin from Finland that sentence would have never...ended.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Mr.J on January 07, 2016, 12:12:04 PM
Depends how patient you are, if you have to read the next one immediately and demand it then might be best to wait until it's done.

And while the GRRM thing is mildly annoying I get way more excited for Scott Lynch's Gentleman Bastard series, due to his struggling health and personal issues it took quite a while for the third book to come out from the second, years and years even. While it was disappointing I can't deny it makes it even more fun with the anticipation, does no one else find it fun to have the build up and wait for the next book?

As when Republic of Thieves came out (on my birthday as well) I couldn't wait to dive in and I enjoyed it all the more so I believe.

It's why i still quite like watching TV shows week to week as well, The Flash, Doctor Who, Orphan Black - all part of the fun of the story really, waiting for the next one (I binge plenty too though).
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: JMack on January 07, 2016, 12:15:01 PM
Voted. In the majority.
Whatevers.

Though I do find myself looking for completed series a wee bit these days. Just not enough to sway.

On the other hand - and I'm sure this point has been raised in the thread above (which I haven't read - maybe because it's not complete?  :D ) - my patience for the dragging out of series is almost at an end. Rothfuss, Martin, and even Lynch - I'm talking about you.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Nora on January 07, 2016, 12:57:13 PM
Never ever cared about a series being in progress while picking a book up. And I've been waiting for TWO of the GRRM books since discovering him as a teen. Still doesn't dampen my habit. If it's good I'll read it. If it ends on a cliff hanger, I'll probably be a bit ruffled, maybe won't pick any new book for a couple of days, let that last one settle.
Then I pick a new thing and it's either great or I move on to a new one.

I mean, how many complete series have I stopped reading because I got bored, or simply not pleased enough with it that it can't wait to be completed another time (if ever)? A lot. So I really don't see the point of limiting myself at all.

If a series is dense, awesome, and has parts published many years appart, I'll just re-read books before the publishing time. That's fine by me.
Besides, pre ordering a book, or going insane for the day your library will open with it all fresh out of its delivery box is something you just don't get unless it's part of a series. Of course you can be excited by a new book by a fav author, but when you know that new book will answer crucial questions or bring back favorite characters, it's just more intense.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: DrNefario on January 07, 2016, 04:16:34 PM
And while the GRRM thing is mildly annoying I get way more excited for Scott Lynch's Gentleman Bastard series, due to his struggling health and personal issues it took quite a while for the third book to come out from the second, years and years even. While it was disappointing I can't deny it makes it even more fun with the anticipation, does no one else find it fun to have the build up and wait for the next book?
I don't think the Gentlemen Bastards books are quite the same, since they are more-or-less complete tales in each book. I think that makes it easier to wait.

And in Pat Rothfuss's case, he should have split Wise Man's Fear into five 200-page books, and released one a year, to buy himself some time. ;)
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: CaitSpivey on January 07, 2016, 07:00:47 PM
For me, there's a point where the waiting becomes too much. As a kid with the Harry Potter books, I was frantic with every new one, but as an adult I lose some of that excitement. I started ASOIAF right before the fifth book came out, so I got to preorder it and get those tingles. But knowing that it'll be at least another year, probably more, makes me pretty "meh" about book six. Of course, that might have been because of book five, which was really down and more depressing than usual--if I remember from what, three, four years ago?

This happens to me with shows, too. I'm a huge Doctor Who fan, and yet I haven't watched any of the new season because it was such a long wait that I couldn't sustain the excitement.

With all these things, I do plan to read/watch them. It's just sort of like, if the creators can take their time creating, then I will enjoy them at my leisure too.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Nox on January 07, 2016, 07:23:55 PM
For me, there's a point where the waiting becomes too much. As a kid with the Harry Potter books, I was frantic with every new one, but as an adult I lose some of that excitement.


Ah, I did that too. I remember endless discussions on CoS and even "hacking" Jo's site only to find dummy text but not knowing it was dummy text. We thought we struck gold as we hastily tried to translate the Latin text. Heh.


But yeah, I remember basically growing up with those books. It saddens me that I haven't really been dedicated to anything as much as I was to HP when I was a young fellow and probably never will again.


Which is actually one of the bigger reasons why I only read finished stuff. I don't trust myself to actually remember anything past a certain point in time so if I read something unfinished then continue it when the next part comes out, I will be completely and utterly lost. It matters little if I liked it or not, there are now more important things that occupy my memory.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Pwibble on January 07, 2016, 09:15:13 PM
I don't know how old/experienced all the commenters are on this thread, but I am now in my mid to late thirties and I have actually really enjoyed the fact that I have had to wait for books from some authors recently. I think I went through a phase where I was reading completed series (or even re-reading) and watching dvd box sets and there was instant gratification but I think I was missing the excitement and anticipation of a new book from my favourite authors and buying it when it first comes out.
Back when I was in my teens/twenties I remember waiting for new books by David Gemmell, Terry Prachett even dare I say it Piers Anthony and David Eddings. There was a real excitement to knowing that a book was coming and a huge rush on then being able to buy it (or borrow it from the library) and sitting down to read it.
I think some of the examples being talked about (GRRM and Pat Rothfuss) are extreme examples of hugely popular, complex series which have, for whatever reasons, been slow in coming. I only discovered ASOIAF maybe 3-4 years ago so I haven't been sat there waiting for each book to come out, and I did enjoy when A Dance With Dragons came out. I can handle waiting for the next books in these epic series but might lose interest I suppose in lesser series.
I also enjoy when you "discover" something new and can watch it developing. For me that has been things like Duncan M Hamilton and Sebastien De Castell's recent books. There is a pleasure in being involved from the start!
One last point, since I am waffling on, is that it is nice to know that you will get more books from your favourite authors. So, knowing that I will probably see more books from GRRM, Pat Rothfuss, Scott Lynch is a great pleasure. I still remember having to come to terms with there never being any more David Gemmell books... Still wish I could have  a few more though!
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Lanko on January 07, 2016, 09:47:44 PM
Apologies for making some small changes on the options. But I think now they all seem independent. I thought 3 was previously fully including 1. Let me know if it feels right now.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: YordanZh on January 11, 2016, 10:15:29 AM
I try to wait usually, but sometimes a book just sounds to interesting to ignore for long. The irony is that sometimes I wait for years but the author is so slow that I at some point give up and read his/her first books, even though those are precisely the cases in which you should wait - when the author is writing too slow.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: magisensei on January 11, 2016, 10:29:31 PM
I read the series as they come out.  Most series are pretty good with annual releases in their series - its really only series like Game of Thrones and a few others that don't have regular publication date for some reason or other - and for those I will get them as they come out - but sometimes I will drop the series instead of completing it.  At times it is not worth waiting or re-reading a series just to read the latest installment that is years and years late. 

Of course sometimes I collect and wait a while until I start to read them so that I can read a whole bunch at once - just finished reading Michelle Sagara's Chronicles of Elantra - all 11 books so far in the series.   
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Lanko on January 11, 2016, 10:39:19 PM
I've just read Beyond Redemption, by Michael R. Fletcher.

There wasn't anything signaling it was going to be a trilogy and I thought it was a standalone. Shit. While I'm very happy this book will continue, now I'm also gonna have to wait years to see what happens next.

However, it was so damn good that I think I would have regretted not having read it. It would be possible that 2, 3 or more years down the road I would've not even remembered the book. Damn, that would be depressing.

While I'm so far on the option 2 group, I think I'm leaning more towards 3 now.

Maybe just be a bit careful to not pile up a crapload of unfinished series. BR isn't exactly an easy read, there's plenty of names, "ranks", "powers", very subtle details and such. Imagining having another dozen of those around and waiting for another dozen sequels over many years, while still picking up more new/unfinished series along the way.

But after BR I'm more inclined to start new series. I think the only one I'm really gonna wait to be finished is Kingkiller (if it really finishes at 3, if not, I may as well start it) as there is a chance it will be released this year or the next.

 
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Nora on January 11, 2016, 11:13:49 PM

However, it was so damn good that I think I would have regretted not having read it. It would be possible that 2, 3 or more years down the road I would've not even remembered the book. Damn, that would be depressing.

Why would it be? It's great if you don't remember it enough that you'd need to re-read it. It means you get to re-discover and re-enjoy it all!
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Lanko on January 11, 2016, 11:22:09 PM

However, it was so damn good that I think I would have regretted not having read it. It would be possible that 2, 3 or more years down the road I would've not even remembered the book. Damn, that would be depressing.

Why would it be? It's great if you don't remember it enough that you'd need to re-read it. It means you get to re-discover and re-enjoy it all!

No, I meant if I had decided not to read it now and wait until it was complete, and during those years ended up forgetting the book, thus missing a really good one.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Michael R. Fletcher on January 12, 2016, 12:53:13 AM

However, it was so damn good that I think I would have regretted not having read it. It would be possible that 2, 3 or more years down the road I would've not even remembered the book. Damn, that would be depressing.

Why would it be? It's great if you don't remember it enough that you'd need to re-read it. It means you get to re-discover and re-enjoy it all!

Glad you liked it!

The next two books are already written. The Mirror's Truth is a sequel and takes place immediately after Beyond Redemption. The other, The All Consuming, takes place elsewhere in the same world. Just waiting on word from the publisher.

Let's hope my delusions manifest.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: CaitSpivey on January 12, 2016, 10:36:41 PM
Maybe just be a bit careful to not pile up a crapload of unfinished series.

That's a good way to look at it. I'm usually not bothered by waiting for sequels because I keep reading stand-alones and other series in between. It ends up pretty well-paced.
Title: Re: Do you read unfinished series or prefer to wait?
Post by: Kitvaria Sarene on February 22, 2016, 11:09:25 PM
I read whatever catches my eye and I don't care if it is completed or not.
I like reading complete series - meaning I can binge read them all - but I also love finding new authors and helping to spread the word!
Thankfully I have a really good brain when it comes to remembering plots - so even after some years break between books I can just jump right back in and the rest will come back in just a few pages. In my head a series grows into just one big book. I often couldn't tell what happened in which book (especially in series like Harry Dresden with so many books out), but I know what happened to the characters and world. Just not seperated into single books.

If I actually had to reread the older books I might tend to prefer to wait.