The HWA's Eighth Roundtable - Writing a Series

We didn’t have a Roundtable during May as I got called away to the jungles of Papua New Guinea before I could arrange it; I’ve spent the past few weeks battling locals and angry spirits up here in the Southern Highlands where civilization seems a distant--but fond--memory. But there’s a bit of structure now in place so expect these Roundtables to return to a more frequent viewing from here on out (I’ve probably said that before but I mean it this time--unless those wild spirits get me ...).

Before I announce our next topic and our super cool guests, I’d like to put a call out to all HWA members to contact me with ideas for future discussions, and better yet, to offer up your soul in servitude for an hour or so one month. The chains we use for our special guests are padded so you’ll be well looked after, I promise [Insert evil laugh here]. Drop me a line at

Now, on with the show.

The HWA’s seventh Horror Roundtable will take place on Saturday the 11th of May at noon EST. So go get a cuppa tea and settle in for a fun time, ‘cos we have a great line up all ready to rattle your brains!

The topic this round is Writing a Series (thanks for the idea, Kathy Ptacek!). Please join our special guests Nancy Holder, Kelley Armstrong, F. Paul Wilson, and Kim Newman, as they discuss the following:

“What do writers owe their readers when they write books in series? Or do they not owe anything at all? The readers are the people who buy the books and 'pay' the writer with eventual [we hope!] royalties. The people and situations in a book and a series are the writer’s creation and for themselves foremost ... but if a writer isn’t thinking of potential readers, then why bother sending the book to an agent or publisher? Why try to get it published? And ... what does a writer owe her own characters? Did she form them and breathe life into them only to cut things off in a matter of a few books? Of course, we can think of Sherlock Holmes who died but was brought back after Doyle got a lot of Victorian flak.”

So please join us over on the HWA’s blog at noon EST on May 11.

The HWA’s Horror Roundtable is a public discussion about all things writing--a monthly virtual horror panel that will be run on the HWA Blog (

Here's how the HWA’s Horror Roundtable works:

1. The Horror Roundtable will run once a month.

2. For each Roundtable, a group of special guests will be invited to participate in a discussion on a selected topic. Our guests' profiles will be posted on the Dark Whispers blog prior to each Roundtable, along with the topic of discussion.

3. The Horror Roundtable will begin with our guests discussing the topic.

4. After the first hour, the Roundtable will be opened for the general public to contribute, and it will remain this way for the duration of the week. During this time, anyone can join in the discussion to ask questions or offer their own views. Our Guests will be available for thirty minutes directly after the Roundtable to answer or respond to any immediate questions or comments that come in from the public, and they will also check back in from time to time during the week to provide further comments.

5. At the end of the week, the Roundtable will be closed, but it will remain online so people can go back and read it at their leisure. No further comments will be allowed at this point.

6. An announcement about the next Horror Roundtable, including the next set of guest profiles, will be posted toward the end of each month.