Stories are defined by the characters within their pages. There is often a main character who portrays a hero and conversely a villain or two. Some stories involve groups of characters that have to overcome insurmountable odds to achieve the success of their goal. This goal could simply be to stay alive!
A conundrum for me is the continual development of each character as the storyline progresses. When do I reveal personal details or the background information upon which each one is built? Should these details be released over time, throughout the course of many books, or all at once?
For me, whether it be deemed right or wrong, I am revealing separate elements in each novel. Thus the reader will learn a little about George, Joe, Peter and many others in each book as the series progresses. Book one, 'First Contact', barely scratches the surface and provides a basic introduction only. The second book in the series, 'Discovery', adds more details, while book three, 'Colony', adds further elements. Each future book in the series will add even more to each character allowing folks to get to know them slowly.
The development of some characters will occur over many books. Those like Commander Jie and Regent Voknor have tantalizingly little added with each book, yet hopefully enough. One downside to this style is that folks who only read the first book may feel that character development is lacking. As the story spreads itself over across many books, they all have to be read in order to gain a full appreciation of the details that are interwoven throughout.
Another crucial element to the Terran Chronicles Universe, is the short stories. These story line deviations are not required reading, however they add a lot in a few words. These short stories allow me to explore elements that would otherwise slow down the pace of the main novels. I do not want readers distracted by these side stories, yet they are an important element to the overall experience.
It is very difficult at times when writing, as I so wish to expose facets to some of these characters, and yet I must stay true to the path laid out. I will provide a hint though! All is not as it seems for some members of the Terran Crew. Fate and destiny have intertwined at so many levels for some of the people that it will take the entire first five books of the 'Initiation Series' to even begin to understand their roles.
I wish I had more quality time to write, there is so much to the story yet to be revealed. I have heard that patience is a virtue, thus I patiently add a few words each day, and watch as many of the characters within the Terran Chronicles Universe are slowly revealed.
Take it easy mates.