What Makes a Good Continuity Author

by Renee Ryan, author of Stand-In Rancher Daddy

I’m extremely excited to chat about my July 2016 release, Stand-In Rancher Daddy, the first book in a three-part miniseries for Love Inspired Historical. Lone Star Cowboy League is connected to the Love Inspired six-book series with the same name. The Lone Star Cowboy League books are all set in Texas and are part of a publisher-generated series, also known as a continuity series. The other two books in the historical series are, respectively, A Family for the Rancher by Louise M. Gouge and A Rancher of Convenience by Regina Scott.

What makes continuities distinct is that the publisher comes up with the series overview and story plots for each book. Different authors are then contracted to write the individual books. Stand-In Rancher Daddy marks the fourth time I’ve been asked to work on a continuity series.

If I could sum up what makes a good continuity author it would be: Works well with others. Although the publisher provides the overall premise and plot for each book, there are a lot of details that must be worked out by the individual authors.

It’s impossible to have continuity in continuities ( 🙂 ) without the authors working in close collaboration with one another. Certain plot elements that run through all the books often need additional brainstorming.

For instance, Louise M. Gouge, Regina Scott and I knew who the cattle rustler was (No spoilers—you’ll have to read the other books!), but we weren’t sure how to introduce the culprit in each of our books. We also needed to create names for the businesses in Little Horn, Texas. In addition, a town map was really helpful so we could know where each of our ranches was located in relation to the others.

I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed working with Louise and Regina. They are both detail-oriented, phenomenally talented writers. They were easy to work with and, yes, I’d do so again.

Are you a fan of continuity series? If so, what do you like about them? Do you have a favorite?

About Stand-In Rancher Daddy:

standin rancher daddySuddenly a Father 

Rancher CJ Thorn isn’t ready to graduate from uncle to brand-new daddy—but he has no choice. After his widowed brother runs off, a pair of adorable twins have no one but CJ…and lovely neighbor Molly Langley. She’s helped with the girls for so long that she’s almost part of the family. Almost. CJ knows his family isn’t good enough for her. Not when his brother’s actions have disgraced the Thorn name yet again.

Watching CJ become a devoted father would soften any woman’s heart. Yet Molly must remain immune. CJ deserves more than a woman who can’t have children. Held back by fear, it’ll take a disaster forcing the community together before they’re ready to risk a chance on happiness.

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