How early is too early to plan a sequel?

Or “How to handle being too attached to your own characters without killing them all at the end of the book.”

I skipped out on writing and reading yesterday (ignoring my journal entry last night, which doesn’t really count since it’s not creative writing and the goal was some creative writing each day).  I’d like to say I took a day off for a good reason, but it was mostly just a mix of laziness and being tired from work.  Excuses, excuses.

Naturally, I felt a bit guilty about that today, and so I focused on getting some new bits added to “Joshua’s Nightmares”.  I had errands to run today in preparation of an important interview of the job variety, which meant I had to get a shower at some point.  In the process of getting ready to shower (yes, I know, there is a lot of process to me not being lazy on my weekends off), I found myself thinking about certain prominent characters from “Joshua’s Nightmares” and where they’d end up at the end of the story.  Yes, there would be closure for them, but it felt like there was more that could happen.

And that’s when an idea happened.  It met up with similar ideas, which in turn met with other similar ideas.  I realize this presents a bit of a bothersome situation, as I’m not even close to halfway done with “Joshua’s Nightmares” and I’m already thinking, “Hey, there should be a second book.”

So the real question to you writer-type people is how soon is too soon for sequel-oriented thinking?  Or is it just one of those things you should embrace as it happens?

Either way, I’m afraid to say I’ll have to stash the ideas away in my little red Moleskine for the time being.

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