How Many Novels Per Year?

How many novels should an author write per year to sustain a dedicated following?

If you consider a novel to be 250 to 400+ pages, my experience tells me it would be difficult to write, edit, publish and market more than two books per year. Even two is a challenge. Nonetheless, I’ve recently set two mysteries per year as a publishing goal for the Mountain Mystery Series.  

My writing team consists of me and my talented editor and wife, Claudia. With Claudia as my sounding board, I come up with the characters, settings, and plots, and then produce the first draft of each novel. Claudia directs the editing process, which takes as much time as writing. 

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Together we’ve self-published nine novels and two short story collections over the past ten years, culminating with the four books in the Mountain Mystery Series. This mystery series contains my most successful novels, and dedicated readers continue to grow.  

The fifth book, A TOWN IN FEAR, is well underway and targeted for release by year-end.  It is a sequel to A TOWN DIVIDED, just released on July 1st, but as with all novels in this series, it can be read on its own.  

So, I hope the answer to my original question is two books per year will grow a dedicated following.  I’ll continue to do my best to come up with compelling characters, fast-moving mysteries, and surprise endings.  Keep a lookout for A TOWN IN FEAR… and the next mystery, coming six months later.

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