What I learned from Sookie Stackhouse. Or: The pressure to end a series well.

Dead Ever After: A Sookie Stackhouse Novel (SSTB)

I am heartbroken.

I haven’t even read the book yet, and I’m heartbroken over how the Southern Vampire/True Blood/Sookie Stackhouse series is ending. And I’m heartbroken over what CH must be feeling, reading the reviews posted today. I’m heartbroken because of the price, and because of the spoilers I saw last week, and yeah, I’m a little angry.

I’m not going to go into details about the book, because I only know second hand data. I’ve read enough to be unsure if I even want to read it. And on a much smaller scale, I can relate to the pressure on the author when it comes time to wrap up a series.

Fortunately for me, I don’t have to be worried that fans may fillet me alive if I pick the wrong person for Riya ( at least I hope I don’t.) But  I do understand the pressure to answer questions. Give satisfying conclusions. Be true to the characters and the parameters of the world.

And I hope, with utmost sincerity, Broken Stone will accomplish all of that and more for all of you. I hope you are left content, instead of reaching for pitchforks. Because ultimately, I don’t write for me. I write to tell Riya’s story, and I write for all of you. Many times, characters in my series made choices I wish they wouldn’t, but I still knew they were the right choices for those characters to make given their personalities, histories, and circumstances.

Undertaking a series can often feel like a risk. We invest a significant amount of time and money into stepping into a new world, and the payoff from book to book can vary. More than that, one book, or one epilogue can undo the happiness we’ve felt from previous books.

As a fan who currently feels a bit jilted, I haven’t forgotten the responsibility I owe each of you for Broken Stone. I’ve worked with an editor, beta readers, critique partners, family and friends to make sure it is everything we want it to be.

Now, pardon me while I go cry into my coffee about an ending for Sookie that will never be.