Are you signed up for the Publishers Weekly newsletters? I receive the Children's Bookshelf edition each week to stay abreast on book deals, e-book news, and whatever else is going on in the kidlit world.
This week's edition included an article titled YA Series Making Fast Tracks, which discusses the frequency with which sequels are published. Publishers are allowing less and less time between installments in hopes of keeping readers interested. Too long of a wait and you lose the readership, they say.
I hope you read the article because if you think about it, this demand affects us more than it affects the reader's experience. If your publisher required you to pump out books as fast as James Patterson (without the writer horde to write for you), how would you deal?
I think the notion that readers do not keep interest over the course of two years is a bit absurd. When I discovered the Percy Jackson series, the first three books had been published. I finished the third book just in time for the fourth's debut, and then I waited a year for book five. Of course the wait was difficult, I NEEDED to know what happened to Percy, Annabelle, and Grover, but life needed living and took up the time between my visits to Camp Half Blood.
Similar story with The Hunger Games. I read the first book shortly after it was published, just as the first wave of hype hit book lovers. When Catching Fire came out, I took the day off from work. As book three approached, I was beyond excited. I had pre-ordered my copy seven months ahead of time. Over the three years that it took for The Hunger Games trilogy to be published, my excitement never waned.
I think some publishers need a lesson in quality vs quantity.