Should I… Well, Stop?

The Bell Mountain Series - Reformed Reviews

I’m currently working to finish Book No. 15 of my Bell Mountain series, The Witch Box. If my execution lives up to my vision, it’ll be my best book yet.

Edgar Rice Burroughs kept writing Tarzan because the Lord of the Jungle put most of the food on the table; but he complained a lot about having to do it. Agatha Christie came to a point where she was really and truly sick of Hercule Poirot; but she kept on writing him because the readers still wanted him.

I am not tired of writing Bell Mountain. In fact, next time out, I’m thinking I’d like to go back in time 2,000 years to tell the story of King Ozias. But there are some folks out there who think it’s time it was “Lights Out” for Bell Mountain, adios, don’t let the door hit you in the tuchas on your way out…

Of course my books are microscopic, compared to Tarzan or Poirot. I don’t have to worry about angry mobs besieging my publisher because they want Bell Mountain back (which is what happened, literally, when Arthur Conan Doyle tried to kill off his creation, Sherlock Holmes). I have no advertising. Just this wee blog.

My question to readers is, Should I put a cork in it? (One reader says even Wytt bores him, anymore. Good grief.) Have you had your fill of Bell Mountain? Or should I keep on going for as long as the Lord gives me something to write and Chalcedon’s willing to publish it?

Just askin’.

16 comments on “Should I… Well, Stop?

  1. I would say let the Lord lead you. Ask Him, specifically, what He would have you do. He will bless whatever you do according to His will. If you keep getting interesting ideas, I would not think it time to stop, but you should get definite promptings one way or the other. Just my two cents.

  2. I think the biggest hurdle for a really long book series is it’s a little intimidating for new readers because they would have a lot of catching up to do. Only the most popular series can pull that off and they are the exceptions.

    I guess it comes down to rather you want to continue the series or not. If it makes you happy then that is reason enough to continue writing it.

    If not, there are other possibilities. You could put the series aside for awhile and try something new or perhaps start a spin off series with existing characters.

    1. That would be interesting. You are the master of this work and can pursue whatever branches the story takes in your mind. I think Ozias might be a worthy branch to pursue.

    2. After all, he was Ozias who got the whole story rolling by erecting his bell on the summit of Bell Mountain. And my regular characters need a break from all those wars.

    3. His story should be told.

      I’ll make an observation. You have an extraordinary ability to not only construct fantasy, but also to create fantasies which are durable in your imagination and which allow you to fill in the details to a fine degree. Anyone can make up a story, but making up a good story, and keeping that story alive is another matter, altogether. Your inner world is rich and consistent.

      The first Bell Mountain book took me to another world and that mental imagery has remained consistent, ever since. That’s a rare talent. While I don’t embrace all of his values, Jimmy Buffet has always amazed me by the way he can tell a story in his lyrics and I can see it unfolding in my mind. That’s a rare ability, and I feel the same about your ability to craft fantasy.

      I love the Scurvyshire world of Violet Crespucular and, once again, I have distinct mental images of Scurvyshire, anachronisms and all. (I somehow see Scurvyshire as a hybrid of olde England and mid century America. Somehow, I could see Coldsore Hall as having some plastic pink Flamingos out front, and that would be just fine with everybody.) 🙂

    4. I’ve noted that while you are certainly a mature and serious person, you have always retained a connection to things that interested you as a child. I’m the same way. If you were to turn me loose in a library, I’d be interested in the same things I would have been interested in during my grade school years, with a few new interests added to the mix. Even my interest in history got its start in revisiting the events of the early space program, which led back to the Cuban Missile Crisis, and into Cold War history, and I’ve been working my way back in time, ever since. But the point is, it started because of pursuing interests which were the current events of my childhood years.

      Anyhow, the fact that you have retained the interests you have, such as you collection of dinosaurs, speaks volumes to me. I think that a lot of people allow life to draw them away from who they truly are, but that hasn’t happened with you. That’s a good thing.

  3. I am looking forward to reading about King Ozias! Even CS Lewis’ Narnia series has books about different characters throughout Narnia’s history.

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