As much as I want Legend to be the first book, I realize it cannot be. There are several reasons for this. Yes, it is the better written novel, but it doesn’t have enough of the back story on what should be the established characters to make sense of what they are thinking and feeling. Especially when I am introducing a whole new century and the characters from there.
My main character Jo is a perfect example of this. In Legend, her strong personality comes through, but I needed it to come off a little more cautious and fearful than it does. The first two novels in the series help establish that reason for her fear as well as the baseline that she should be judge by.
The second problem is the chronological order of things. I do not want to rely on flash backs, time travel and other trickery. I already have time travel as part of the series as story line. While it a necessary evil, I don’t want to keep adding loops to it and potentially confuse my reader base.
Legend is also the first major dual century book, meaning that after it is published I can stay in the 21st Century or jump forward to the 26th and come back when need be. I don’t want to put myself in that position too early since there are some good character twists that take place if I follow a chronological order.
Which bring me to and interesting thought. I think too much is revealed in the current 26th Century epilogue of Legend. When, I originally, wrote it, it made sense because it neatly tied up the story while setting the table for the remainder of the 26th century books. However, it diminishes the value of the 21st Century books because it basically turns them into memories. Sort of like the movie Secretariat, where the director tried to build up tension but you already knew everything was okay in the end because the history books said so.
So if I were going to do this, how would I? Well, technically I should start with Tiberius (or whatever I am going to rename that book) because it was the first book written, but Spirit of the Lone Horse, the second one, makes more sense being first since that is the beginning of the the 21st Century characters’ storyline. Tiberius would come next and after that, Legend. Then after Legend, there are three more books that are musts before I can jump to the 26th Century. They are about four others that are really basic ideas, which can be written out of order because they only add historical significance and reference to the overall universe and not story or character value to the main characters.
Of course, this screws up my timing on everything because Spirit is a few months out from being ready. I did manage to save some significant chunks from the previous version, so I’m happy about that. I also have a cover that excites me, which is more than I can say for Legend.
So in the end how many books will I end up publishing? I don’t know. I’m hoping the whole series which then becomes a universe for other authors to contribute to. I can definitely guarantee a trilogy, though.