Spin-Off, Anyone?

Oooh. Oooh. Today’s question is a super fun one from Chris C. in GA.

Q:  What are your thoughts on a ‘spin off’ from your series? For example one of your old ladies going to NYC to see her niece graduate from NYU. What would/could you do different? Would it be good or bad for the series?

A: First, let me say I LOVE this question. I’d never thought of it…until now. And since I feel as if the ladies of Sweet Briar are truly my friends, it’s kind of fun to imagine for  a while. Hmmm.

Of course, not that you’ve got me thinking along that way, I find myself thinking, who could leave? And why? Leona could leave…on the heels of some uniformed man. This southern-to-the-core woman could end up in, maybe, Chicago?  (If you read this series, you know Leona has issues with Chicago–which we’ll learn more about in the November release).  Or mayBeatrice could go back to England…or take on a new family to nanny in, say, California–footloose and fancy free (she’s rather English proper so the change might be fun to see with her).

The differences potential spin-offs might provide would be a change in setting first and foremost. And for a while, that difference could play out in atmosphere/supporting character changes, I suppose. I also think that by removing a character like Leona–who is rather full of herself, largely because she’s comfortable–you’d change her somewhat. Would she be as cocky in a town where she didn’t know anyone? I’m not sure. I think I’d almost have to sit down and write a scene with her in an entirely new place with an entirely new group of people to find out how she’d behave/what she’d say.

As for whether it would be good or bad for the series, I think I’d have to say bad. At least at this point. With each new book that releases, I gain new fans. People who read the new book, enjoy it, and then search out the previous titles. And while the series has a main character in Tori Sinclair, each member of the circle as their place–with different ones being the favorite of different readers. As the writer, I can’t imagine Leona or Beatrice not being part of certain scenes. I need them for what their unique personality brings to the overall story/tone.

That said, if the original series had played itself out and there was any indication I could keep writing even one of them in a new series…depending on the character (like Leona), I’d certainly give it a try. 🙂

Great question, Chris!

Anyone else? Questions? Thoughts on my answer? Frankly, I’d be curious on what some of your thoughts are about spin-offs from series–either mine or others?


5 Responses to “Spin-Off, Anyone?”

  1. Liz V.
    September 15th, 2011 at 7:22 am

    Perhaps Tori needs to return to Chicago, to clear up unresolved matters, but definitely keeping in touch with her friends to help her through the crisis?

  2. Elizabeth
    September 15th, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    Liz, those matters are *cough* resolved in book 5 (coming November 1st). 🙂 Just a little hint for you…

  3. Laura M. Campbell
    September 15th, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    Great question! I agree with you, Elizabeth. A spin-off could do damage to the original series, especially if the series still has life and a few more novels left in it.

  4. Liz V.
    September 16th, 2011 at 9:42 am
  5. Elizabeth
    September 16th, 2011 at 9:28 pm

    Wow. No, I didn’t. THANKS Liz!!!!

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