Pros and Cons of Writing Sequels

In the book publishing world today, sequels are all the rage. We are all familiar with the Fifty Shades of Grey books, the Hunger Games books, and perhaps the most popular book series of all time, the Harry Potter books. Sequels can be a goldmine for authors, but do they have a downside? Here’s a list of the pros and cons of writing a series.


  • If the first book in a series is successful, you’re halfway there. Obviously, you will have to create new plots and twists, but as far as characters and theses go, you’ve got your bases covered.
  • Sequels can be a cash cow. If your first installment catches on, the excitement to know what happens next can create significant public interest, which will result in higher demand for your book.
  • As far as promotion goes, every book in the series after the maiden one basically sells itself. If you market the first one right, you won’t have to spend a large amount of time and resources promoting the rest.
  • You are likely to garner new readers/fans with each successful sequel. As your series progresses, new readers will be compelled to read the story from the beginning.


  • You will have a lot of pressure for the first book to be a success. Chances are if the first book does not do well, no one will be interested in a sequel.
  • Keeping the plot interesting can also be a challenge, especially because readers develop a sense of familiarity with the characters and feel like they know who they are and what they may/may not be capable of.
  • Keeping the story consistent while still maintaining its “freshness.”
  • Tying loose ends. Storylines from the first installment may not come together until the third or fourth installments, so making sure all questions are answered in a way that keeps readers engaged can be a difficult task.

These are just a few things for authors should consider when writing a sequel. Can you think of any more pros and/or cons? Let us know!