Clayfield Cliffhangers

I want to assure anyone who happens to visit this blog that I will do my best to keep out any spoilers for my books both in the blog posts and comments section. I personally hate spoilers. I don’t even like to watch movie trailers, because they reveal too much. Some of my blog posts will discuss my books, but not all. When I do discuss my books, I will do so in general terms.
I had a regular blog a couple of years ago, and it was hacked and destroyed. I don’t know if I will be as active on this one as I was back then.
Now, to the post….

zombie5Initially, I had no plans to make The King of Clayfield into a series. I wrote the first book so it could stand alone. I have read some reviews of the first book that mention a cliffhanger ending, but I’m not sure why they would think that except that the narrator is telling the story eight months later. I thought the ending of the first book was adequate and final enough. While there was no resolution to the zombie situation, I didn’t feel like I’d left any wild loose ends. The zombies weren’t really the main focus of the story anyway. Also, since the story is in first person, you have to accept that there are some things the narrator just does not know.

I will agree that the second book had a “cliffhanger” ending, but only in the sense that there was more story to tell. As the word count climbed on the second book, I realized the story would not be resolved. At first, I did try to include the first few chapters of what would be the third book with the second, but no matter where I cut it off, it would leave the reader with questions. So I made the decision to leave Sara’s situation unanswered. I understand why some would readers dislike that, but sometimes the story that comes after the story just won’t fit and must be given its own room. I did try end the second book in such a way that it wouldn’t feel abrupt.

I do not intend to write a fourth Clayfield book, but I will never say never. I ended the third book in such a way that the series could be over. If I do come back to it, I will probably set the story further into the future rather than pick up where I left off. I think writing a story set in a world after the zombies waste away would be interesting.

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5 Responses to Clayfield Cliffhangers

  1. Mateusz Paszek says:

    Based on books 1 and 2, it certainly would not break MY heart if a book 4 showed up.

    In the meantime, looking forward to installment 3.

    • admin says:

      Thanks for the comment, Mateusz!
      I might do it again one day for no other reason than it is easy to write what I know. That and apocalyptic fiction is so fun to write (and read).

  2. H Miller says:

    Hello Shane
    I cannot recall having written an author- but after completing the third book of the KOC series AND reading your comments on “the series being finished”- I felt compelled to write here. This is a superb series that grows on the reader bit by bit- I like the fact that it is not really about zombies but about the characters and their reaction to all that they know being destroyed. There is so much left to explore in the KOC series. Some questions that could be explored are
    * How are societies formed? What makes one group (or society) warlike or violent and what makes others peaceful (or at least not want to bother others or be bothered).
    *How does leadership devolve on an individual?
    *By what means to people choose, or allow themselves to be governed?

    At the end of Book three you have turned this from a “zombie apocalypse- end of the world” series to a “How does the new world get constructed” series. From my perspective Books 1-3 of the KOC series have set up a huge “what if” canvas upon which you can paint. There are endless possibilities ahead for the story teller, the character and the reader.

    Thanks for the series! Well done!
    Howard

    • admin says:

      Thank you for the message, Howard! I love to hear from readers. I considered going further with the Clayfield series and addressing some of your points. I’m sure if I ever decided to revisit the town, my publisher would be game. Of course, the series would transition from a zombie apocalypse story to something else since the dead were almost all gone by the end of book 3. I know the zombies were always a secondary element of the story, but removing them completely, I didn’t know if it would feel right. That was one of the reasons I stopped. Plus, I thought I’d found a good quitting place. Back at the end of 2012 when I typed that last sentence for Fire Birds, I was ready to write something else for a while. My break wound up going on a bit longer than planned, but now I’m back at it with a new series. My publisher did ask if I wanted to keep going with Clayfield, but I declined at least for now.
      I really appreciate you taking the time to write to me.

  3. H Miller says:

    Thanks- checking in and glad to see the response. I am going to try some of your other novels- I hope you will consider continuing the series as a “what drive societal development”.

    Best of Luck and thank you again

    Howard

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