Over a year ago I got an offer from a small publisher to publish a trilogy of books. The first and second were published but now I’ve been told that the decision was taken to drop the series and the rights have been returned to me. I would imagine it’s pointless to query other publishers to take up the series, which means I have few options: shelve 5 years of work, self-publish (which I really would not like to do) or, I’m toying with the idea of publishing the books one chapter a week on my blog as a thank you to those who loved the series so far and also as self-promotion. Is this another decision as bad as trusting a small publisher? I no longer trust my judgement! I’m writing another novel and hope to find an agent who will help me find a good home for it, so I don’t wish to ruin any little credibility I still have!Ouch!
I'd really appreciate any advice you and your readers care to give to help me put things in perspective.
That's a whole lot of dream stomping there. I've been through this with some clients and it's very hard to find any kind of silver lining.
But, there's no reason you have to do anything with Book #3 right now.
In fact, it's probably better to let it sit for awhile while you regroup and plan.
Get started finding a new agent with the new book.
Then, with your agent, who probably knows a thing or two about this kind of problem, figure out what to do.
The LAST thing you want to do is post it for free.
That limits your options down the road in ways you don't want to imagine.
If you don't want to self-publish, please please please listen to your self and DO NOT DO IT.
Self publishing is a VERY hard task, even when you're all in.
Shelve Book #3, and you'll have all your options preserved for when you need them.