Guest Author Missouri Dalton – The Series Beast

deathschildrentake3First of all, thank you Charlie for putting up with me on your blog today. I’ve decided to talk about series today. In part because the third novel in The Night Wars series was released a few days ago, and because I get asked a lot about what books I’ve planned out next. I am a series writer. I’ve not mastered the stand alone. I love big expansive worlds with interconnective plots and characters. Ideas that can span from the first to twelfth book in a series without getting stale.

I first fell in love with books like the Xanth novels by Piers Anthony and the Forgotten Realms books which hold volumes from people like RA Salvatore and Elaine Cunningham, who seem to have cornered the market on prolific. Because of that, I tend to sit down and start something, and then realize partway through what the second, third, and potential fourth books could be like. What stories I want to tell from the eyes of other characters.

NightShift510What I end up with, if I’m not careful, is a mess of story threads that get tangled up like the yarn you left on the couch too long and the cat got to it. (This has happened to me as well) So I do a lot of organizing. Story titles, story plots, outlines, concepts, character backgrounds…and lots and lots of computer folders and color coded notebooks filled with jottings.

The newest of The Night Wars, The Hellfire Legacy, takes place directly after the events of The Night Shift, the book known for its cliffhanger, and is planned to be Fynn’s final book. It was a hard decision, I assure you, but there are so many other characters I want to write about that it seemed time once I’d managed a trilogy about my recalcitrant psychic.

Fynn will never be far from my thoughts, however, as I dive into the next three plotted novels. I have them in the works in progress section of my blog, but I can give a preview here as well. Next up will be The Dogcatcher, a piece set partially during the Bobby Franks murder in Chicago, 1924. It’s Ian’s book so I get to do a lot of running back and forth between present day Ian and Ian when he was just getting into the Special Police.

The Hanged Man's GhostIt’s one I’ve been really looking forward to writing. After Ian we’re moving to Simon, another book which will straddle timelines in this case the years when Simon was a punk thief and his first solo case with the Night Shift. Should be fun. Third up will be a much anticipated book from Jack who will finally have to confront all those secrets he’s been hiding.

I also have plans for four books that may go congruently with the other three, as they spawn a new part of The Night Wars series I’m calling “International” and then a trilogy from a single character that will likely be YA and then… I’m not sure. I bet though, that something will come up. That’s the nature of the series beast after all, and I’m never one to shy away from the series beast. If you wonder, after reading a short story or a novella of mine, Is there going to be another one? The answer, nine times out of ten, is a resounding Yes. It’s just a matter of when.

I shall leave you with the blurb for my new release, The Hellfire Legacy, and fond wishes. If you’d like, I’d love to hear your comments below about series love/loathe and your own experience with writing the story that never seems to end.



Everything has fallen apart. With the Night Shift HQ destroyed and supernatural murders spreading across Chicago, the Night Shift team circles the wagons. Reeling from their losses, Fynn has to draw on every friend –supernatural and not- he has left to track down the monster responsible, a chase that will take his team far from home and the comfort of the world he thought he knew.

With his partner Jack and their daughter, Fynn faces questions about his family, an old feud and the Night Shift’s origins will bring Fynn closer to the truth, but he’s not sure he going to make it out of this one. He’s not even sure he wants to.



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  1. Thank you so much, Missouri, for being my guest! I can totally understand your love for writing series, and can appreciate the amount of work that goes into it. Congrats on The Hellfire Legacy!

  2. I enjoy reading your books. I have read most of them

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