What do you think about spin-offs in the literary world? A spin-off is not a sequel – those follow the same chracters through several parts of a story. With a spin-off, the characters from the original story may show up occasionally, but are not the focus. It’s also not a remake, where a different person reinterprets an existing story originally by someone else. A spin-off, to be clear, is a work of some type (book, TV show, movie) that takes a character from one book or series, and gives them their own. Think Frasier from Cheers or Angel (sigh) from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

When it comes to books, in some cases it seems like the author just trying to milk more out of a storyline that had already ended satisfactorily. In others, it can provide a new angle or perspective on a well-loved series. In TV and movies, spin-offs are common – it seems like half the shows have been derived from another one these days, with all the CSIs and Law and Orders and NCISs. Books, maybe a little less so. I can’t think of too many, anyway.

I’m pondering this because I have a vague sort of idea where one of the secondary characters from my trilogy could have a book or two of her own somewhere down the road. 99% of the notion is “and then a bunch of stuff happens” which is also a common notation on my outlines, but the seed has been planted, and I’m curious as to whether I should consider watering it and letting it grow. I suppose it all depends on whether or not my trilogy is at all popular and there’s demand for it, and/or whether the character steps up in my head and starts yelling, “what about meeee?”

Something to think about in the distant future, anyway.