I had a fun post all planned out for today, then on Tuesday I went out to pick up my New York Times and saw this trend staring back at me -- on the front page, no less:
Impatience Has Its Reward: Books Are Rolled Out Faster
Quote from article: "The book business is upending its traditional timetable by encouraging a kind of binge reading, releasing new works by a single author at an accelerated pace. The practice of spacing an author’s books at least one year apart is gradually being discarded as publishers appeal to the same “must-know-now” impulse that drives binge viewing of shows like “House of Cards” and “Breaking Bad.”
You can read the full article here. It didn't mention any YA books, and I can't think of any that have been released on a super-short timetable. If you know of any, let me know in comments.
So ... of course my first reaction was YES!!!!
Here are some arguments on the PRO side:
- I am an extremely impatient person.
- As I wait the year between books, I often forget important plot points. Like all of them.
- I'm often hesitant to commit years of my life to a series or trilogy.
- There are SO many books and when I have to wait a long time between books, I lose interest.
- Binge reading is fun.
But then I saw that over the weekend, Robin LaFevers, author of the amazing His Fair Assassin books, wrote this on her blog:
"Writing Mortal Heart in thirteen months is probably the single hardest writing thing I have ever done. Sadly, it required me to withdraw from just about every other thing in my life, including socializing (whether through social media or in real life) and sleeping."
Her first two Assassin books came out on the yearly plan, in April 2012 and 2013, but Mortal Heart will be not out until November 2014. As Robin LaFevers is an author who does not disappoint, I know that it will be worth waiting those extra months for Mortal Heart!
According to Amazon and Goodreads, the third Mara Dyer book was also just delayed. Those books were on the yearly plan (September 2011 and October 2012) but The Retribution of Mara Dyer was pushed back to June 2014 and then more recently to November 2014.
In addition to authors' quality of life, book quality is important too. Sometimes I read a book and feel that it was rushed to print. If an author needs more time, I'd rather they take that time than give up sleep (something I cherish above all else except books) or put out something that could have used a bit more polishing. I don't want to encourage a system of authors working in sweatshop conditions.
But overall, I approve of the trend of more flexibility in publishing dates. Putting all series books on a yearly timetable seems very arbitrary. Some books could have a shorter timetable if the books are ready to go to press -- yay for binge reading! -- but I also think that YA readers can be patient when necessary. And not everything has to be a series. I love the trend toward duologies and companion books, too.
What do you think of this trend? Can you think of other YA books that were published on a faster (or slower) timetable? Let me know in comments.
Note: Sorry, this post went up on Wednesday evening by mistake. I am calendar-challenged.