Long running fantasy series seem to be very popular, and three of my favourite authors are currently engaged in writing them. Robert Jordan, Steven Erikson and George R R Martin have all to some degree decided that their own fantasy series is best served by releasing book after book. Jordan's Wheel of Time series is up to book 13 or 14 and does not look like stopping any time soon, he has been quoted as saying he will finish the series when he dies. Erikson is up to volume 8 and Martin has released the first part of volume 4.
These long books which are part of a longer series make it hard to dive in and enjoy. Whenever a new Jordan book is released I feel compelled to read all the others in an attempt to remind myself what has gone before. This goes for the others as well, and it is getting to the point where the catching up is taking longer than actually reading the new release.
But the fan in my wants to keep reading, and I do enjoy reading these series so I suppose I will continue to immerse myself in these writer's worlds, just don't expect to see me for a while, especially when Jordan releases his latest book, it could take months just to catch up.
On a related note I am excited to hear that American company HBO is looking to make a television series out of Martin's Song of Fire and Ice series. This can only be a good thing coming from the company that released The Sopranos, Deadwood, and Rome. I for one will be interested to watch it.