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Author Topic: Book series completed by suggorate authors upon original writer's death  (Read 3206 times)

July 30, 2016, 10:27:12 AM
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aera

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Because it happens sometimes, unfortunately.

One example I know of is The Wheel of Time series. Robert Jordan knew his time was ending, and told the rest of the plot to Brandon Sanderson so his story could be told in completion.

How do ya'll feel about this when it happens? Yay or nay?
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July 30, 2016, 11:15:48 AM
Reply #1

C_Zachero

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I know the Silmarillion, a collection of some of J.R.R. Tolkein's writings, were edited and published by his son, although I've never read it. I think it can be okay when it happens if the secondary author can replicate the first author's writing style, so the transition isn't so jarring.


August 03, 2016, 09:02:33 PM
Reply #2

aera

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Re: Book series completed by suggorate authors upon original writer's death
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2016, 09:02:33 PM »
That's true, JRR Tolkien's unpublished works and notes were compiled by his son Christopher. I used to have a few of those books, actually. The Unfinished Tales, I believe they were called? Very interesting insight into a writer's mind and how things change as the story progresses.

I haven't actually read the Wheel of Time books that Brandon Sanderson wrote, so I don't have an opinion as to where it is bad, good, or exactly the same as Robert Jordan's style. I think it's a cool idea, at least. Knowing your works will live on to be completed.
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August 03, 2016, 09:49:18 PM
Reply #3

jooliahoolia

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Re: Book series completed by suggorate authors upon original writer's death
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2016, 09:49:18 PM »
I have trouble with series finished by other authors, especially if the original author had a distinct voice. However, it beats not knowing the end to a story — I think Franz Kafka has a book that ends in the middle of a sentence because he died before finishing it?

A really bad example is the Little House series, in which Rose Wilder Lane, the author's daughter, had an especially heavy hand in the final book, The First Four Years. It's a lot more depressing and poorly written than the first books.
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August 04, 2016, 08:58:28 PM
Reply #4

anastasia

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Re: Book series completed by suggorate authors upon original writer's death
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2016, 08:58:28 PM »
I actually haven't read this example, but I have it on my shelf for when I do get the heart to read it. >.>

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series wasn't completed by the time Douglas Adams died in 2005. So Eoin Colfer took it upon himself to write the sixth book and try to tie the story up. Even though I have it on my shelf, I honestly don't know if I can actually go through with reading it. To me, that series is just too personal, and Adam's voice too distinct. I don't really necessarily like the idea of other authors finishing a series after an author's death, regardless of who they are. Especially if they weren't involved in the creation of the series to begin with. It feels like a disservice.

However, there are a few instances where I can see it working. Like mentioned earlier, if the children or close partner/assistant were to finish the series, I would see where they would be able to do the story just. Anne Rice's assistant Becket and her son Christopher Rice could totally take over the Vampire Chronicles if needed (not like we're gonna need that any time soon).

However, I just don't like the idea of it. :S
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March 01, 2017, 09:49:47 AM
Reply #5

aera

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I came across something yesterday while browsing for books, I think it is something I knew before but just forgot perhaps, but Anne McCaffrey's son Todd co-wrote several books with her, then solo-authored several other books in her Pern series. I haven't read anything by him, but the reviews seems positive about both his storytelling style and authentic-seeming plots.

Like JRR & Christopher Tolkien, and PC & Kristen Cast, a lot of parent-offspring writing duos exist and seem fairly common. I think because the kids grew up with their parents writing, and are probably more familiar with the worlds created than most fans, that having them continue the story line would be more personal and intimate for the reader. Though as Julia said, sometimes this is not the best course of action as the books turn out completely different and disappointing.
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February 11, 2018, 06:14:06 AM
Reply #6

PhilipH

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Re: Book series completed by suggorate authors upon original writer's death
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2018, 06:14:06 AM »
I don't know about many cases of this, but in the case of Brandon Sanderson and the Wheel of Time books, I was all for it and I wasn't disappointed. Sanderson is a genious, but on top of that, he's a humble guy that worshiped Jordan and his works. I don't think anyone else could have done it better.