About Series of All Flavors

A map of Discworld

A map of Discworld

There is no denying that series are a massively popular for stories to be dispensed. They allow people to return to worlds they love and exploe more stories and spend time with the characters. It is possibly appealing to all involved. A creator has the ability to really touch on topics that may have been too complex to include in a novel that needs to spend more time establishing characters and worldbuilding than a complex plot may allow. The publishers get the opportunity to build off any previous success and gives them the opportunity to make money. And readers are given the opportunity to take another spin with a beloved world with characters they can’t get enough of. In theory, everyone can win with a series.

Kinds of Series
There are different kinds of series. The series that you are likely to see appear will largely depend on the genre. There are series that are series in the strictest sense of the words. The books share the same characters and they share the same world. There may be a bit a sequential nature to the stories with large plot lines reaching between novels, but it isn’t the main plot and doesn’t ultimately play a role in the story at present. These are standalone stories connected by some common thread. Some examples of these stories are Discworld by Terry Prachett. Many mystery series or thrillers will often have similar themes with the same characters, but each story is individual and unique. I like to think of these stories like TV procedurals. Sometimes we get large plot that drags through the season or through seasons, but often this individual stories that need to be dealt with.

Factions of the Divergent Series' World

Factions of the Divergent Series’ World

Then there are the ologies as I like to call them. You are probably most familiar with the trilogy as it seems to pop up the most. People seem to have an eerie obsession with the number three. Anyway, these stories whether duology, trilogy, quadrology, or more all are part of a larger story. Unlike a series, taking away one of the stories would cripple the story as a whole. Imagine Harry Potter if we never had The Goblet of Fire, when we realized just how much of a threat Volde… He Who Must Not Named really was. Harry’s life had been manipulated before, but after this Harry doesn’t just deal with the problems presented to him, he starts taking action to try to fend for himself. The ologies rely on each individual part to not just tell a contained story, but move the plot of the bigger story forward. Relating it back to TV again, it would be similar to a show like Fringe where each season took a major step forward to the end story. Each of the individual episodes are like plot points in a book where they build the mythology.

Personally, I like them both. However, I tend to get more invested into ologies. There is something about the rising stakes that don’t just culminate in one book, but throughout the entire set of books or seasons. Yet, there is a whimsy to a series that allows you to jump into familiar territory for a new adventure without the commitment a serial commands. Any chance I can get to delve back into a great world with characters I love I will jump at the opportunity in any way it is presented.

Do you prefer series or ologies or standalones?

One thought on “About Series of All Flavors

  1. Pingback: Roundup November 2013 | So, I pondered...

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