Once you've published a book, your writing career may change, and not always for the better. Before publication, your direction as a writer is open and unbiased by other people's expectations of you. After publication, especially if your first book was successful, you'll have to fight to hold onto this freedom and openness. First of all, agents and editors will expect you to write a book that is not only as successful as the first, but is sort of a sequel to it. If you wrote your first novel about a cheeky young woman who climbs mountains, you may have trouble publishing your second novel about a dour old woman who collects stamps. If your first book was how to cook cheaply for a family of ten, you might have trouble publishing a cookbook on gourmet cooking from Italy. In other words, you get typecast.