Does Order Matter?

First off, all the apologies for missing last weeks post. It wasn’t that I forgot or didn’t have an idea, life just sort of…got away from me. Anywho, I’m back and I’ve got another conundrum for you.

Does order matter?

Now when I say order, I don’t mean reading a series out of sequence (we’re not savages). If it says Book 1, Book 2, and so on, do yourself a favor and just read them the way they were meant to be read. No, what I’m talking about is the insanity that I’ve created for myself. Anyone familiar with my collections page is aware that I have several series established. Fun fact, they all take place in the same universe. Which brings me back to my question and the title of this post. Does order matter?

It’s not uncommon for authors to drop easter eggs that reference other works that they have done, #disney does this all the time. But what does it mean for the larger picture when those nuggets or references are actually major spoilers? At least two of the series would literally not exist without the others having come first.

Try to stay with me here.

  • The Shadow Chronicles leads into The War on Darkness
  • The Moons of Mystery leads into The Moon Shadow Saga
    • As does the War on Darkness
  • Coming Home is technically a prequel, so naturally relates to the Moons of Mystery
    • But only to Sara’s Moon
    • Oh and a stand alone (can it even be called that?) A Witch’s Calling

Think I’m done? Not quite. (takes dramatic deep breath)

  • Diana’s Eclipse leads to Bite Me (current working title)
  • Courting Death can only exist because of what happens in the final book of Shadow Chronicles and War on Darkness

And drum roll please……..

  • All of Moon’s of Mystery, War on Darkness, and Moon Shadow Saga (the last two of which wouldn’t exist at all without The Shadow Chronicles), funnel into Hart’s Betrayal, which may or may not end up being the big cherry on top of everything.

So, yeah…a little complicated.

SpoilersNow, imagine you, as the reader, are innocently perusing the shelves of your local book store or latest, greatest reads online, and stumble across–oh, let’s say–Charline’s Solstice. That’s the second book in a trilogy. Technically you can read it on it’s own, but #spoilers. Then you find out it keeps going into The Moon Shadow Saga. Yipee! But wait. The characters in those books are talking about some crazy intense stuff….from another series. Oy vey.

Now you backtrack more. Okay good. War on Darkness. Got it. Let’s do this thing. Except…..they too are talking about crazy intense events, and RUINING EVERYTHING. *insert facepalm*

Do you see my dilemma? Does it even matter?

I’ve taken you through a journey that I’ve been on many a time in my reading life. My favorite example is still the Tamora Pierce series’ Tricksters Choice and the Lioness. (Which I did, for the record, read in reverse order). It was actually my mom of all people who pointed out the connection. The well-established, blatantly obvious, in your face connection. How I missed it, I’ll never know. But that knowledge altered my perception of the characters, enriched them. Deep down, (okay, not deep at all. right up on the surface) I want my readers to experience the full scope of everything these books have to offer, which would mean reading them in some semblance of order.

The huge problem that kicked all of this off? What if they don’t get published in order? Then the option of reading from start to finish isn’t even on the table. *sigh* What’s a struggling writer to do?

Tell me what you think oh great and powerful reader. Does it matter? Do you care? Does it drive you up the wall? Share what you think. Let me know.

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