Ending the Magic ex Libris Series

I noted on Facebook that Revisionary was the final book in the Magic ex Libris series. (Unless something drastic changes, like Hollywood paying me ridiculous money and making a movie, or the books suddenly hitting the NYT list.)

This note was met with a number of very disappointed comments, which is awesome. I mean, not awesome that people are sad or disappointed. But the fact that they loved the characters and the stories and wanted them to continue. That means an awful lot.

Libriomancer Codex Born Unbound Lg Revisionary - Art by Gene Mollica

This will be the third series I’ve brought to a close, and it’s bittersweet each time. In each case, I have ideas or notes or little scraps tucked away on the hard drive for potential continuations. A fourth goblin book, a fifth princess book … and in this case, there’s definite spinoff possibilities with Revisionary.

So why end the series? Several reasons.

  1. It gives me the chance to write something new. After all, if I’d never ended the princess series, we wouldn’t have the Libriomancer books. I know some authors can jump back and forth and juggle multiple series at once, but I have a much harder time with that.
  2. The series reached a natural stopping point, one that brings closure to a lot of the things I’ve been doing throughout the books. In truth, Unbound could have been a good end point as well, but I’m happy to have been able to take that next step with Revisionary.
  3. Economics. Libriomancer was my best-selling book to date, which is awesome. Thank you to everyone who bought, read, reviewed, or otherwise helped make that book so successful. Sales of subsequent books in a series almost always drop off. The question is how much they drop off, how much new books drive sales of the earlier books in the series, and so on. And while I consider this a successful series, it wasn’t successful enough to make Magic ex Libris #5 a better bet than writing something new.

I sent a pitch to my agent over the weekend, and revised it based on his feedback earlier today. I’m hopeful DAW will like the idea. I’m also working on Project Bob, an on spec manuscript (meaning it’s not under contract) that would let me branch out in a slightly new direction. There’s at least one more idea waiting in the queue as well.

My son gets very sad and upset when a show he likes comes to an end, and I understand where he’s coming from. He’s young enough he doesn’t understand the danger of a series stretching out too long and jumping the shark, or simply losing its magic. What he does know is that he likes the show and the characters and the stories, and it sucks that there won’t be any more.

I get that. And I hope that eventually, I’ll be able to come back and play more in these worlds. Maybe via self-publishing as things go out of print. Or maybe there will be a surge of renewed interest someday, and publishers will throw obscenely large bags of money at me.

But for now, Revisionary will be the final book in the series when it comes out in February of next year. As always, my thanks to everyone who’s followed along on this journey, and I hope you’ll join me for the next one.