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View Full Version : Trends and What's Hot in your genre



Beach Bunny
09-21-2008, 05:27 AM
So I got to thinking about the wisdom of keeping up with one's genre, knowing what is currently selling like hotcakes, trends, etc. How valuable is this advice? Given the best of all possible situations, I indentify the trends of my genre, write my bestseller in a few months, immediately get an agent, it immediately gets snapped up at an auction, etc. It will be two years from now before the published book is actually in a bookstore. And in that two years the trend could die out ...

So, what I am wondering is how much attention should one pay to what is going on right now?

SPMiller
09-21-2008, 05:30 AM
AW is going to tell you to ignore trends.

But one trend has been constant for a long time in varying forms: vampires. I don't see how you can possibly go wrong if you throw in some of those.

Karen Duvall
09-21-2008, 05:48 AM
The supernatural, in all shapes, forms and subgenres. It's everywhere and gets stronger every day. I couldn't be happier!!!!

GLAZE_by_KyrstinMc
09-21-2008, 05:54 AM
"Darker" pieces.

Lots of teens now are really into dark books (if you're writing YA) more adults are getting in on it too.

Clair Dickson
09-21-2008, 05:59 AM
Being aware of the trends is different than using them. If you are aware that there are bazillion [fill in the blank] books coming out right now, you may keep in mind that the market could be saturated. And since the market *could* be saturated with [fill in the blank] you have to think about how your book, whether it includes [fill in the blank] or not, will STAND OUT.

While trends come and go, a book that truly stands out will always get recognized.

Be aware of the trends. But more importantly, be aware of how your books is different, better, faster than the rest of the herd of books that are similar to yours.

Deccydiva
09-21-2008, 01:11 PM
I ignore trends. I can't "write to order" so I will write what I honestly feel like writing, for only then will I write well.

JJ Cooper
09-21-2008, 03:14 PM
The next big thing in the thriller genre will be espionage/military thrillers set in Australia. You heard it here first.

JJ

aruna
09-21-2008, 03:58 PM
AW is going to tell you to ignore trends.

But one trend has been constant for a long time in varying forms: vampires. I don't see how you can possibly go wrong if you throw in some of those.

That will be the day I stop writingg. No vampire will ever descend through my fingers onto my screen. Unless it happens to be real vampires, ie vampire bats. I absolutely do not get this whole vampure thing.





Be aware of the trends. But more importantly, be aware of how your books is different, better, faster than the rest of the herd of books that are similar to yours.

That's how I feel about it. I would prefer to start a trend, rather than follow one.

blueobsidian
09-21-2008, 04:43 PM
Being aware of the trends is different than using them. If you are aware that there are bazillion [fill in the blank] books coming out right now, you may keep in mind that the market could be saturated. And since the market *could* be saturated with [fill in the blank] you have to think about how your book, whether it includes [fill in the blank] or not, will STAND OUT.

While trends come and go, a book that truly stands out will always get recognized.

Be aware of the trends. But more importantly, be aware of how your books is different, better, faster than the rest of the herd of books that are similar to yours.

This is exactly what I was going to say. I think it's important to know what the trends are in your genre, but not so you can try to write a clone of them. You need to stand out from the crowd in some way.

tehuti88
09-21-2008, 06:50 PM
I don't even bother looking at trends. I want to write what I want to write, and if it's not what's getting published, well...I would be no better off forcing myself to write something that WOULD stand a better chance of being published, because I know it would suck. *remembers the one time she wrote something totally for others and it utterly bombed* Besides, who's to say that the unpublishable stuff I write now won't become huge sometime in the future? Trends can't predict everything. That's why they're always changing. That's why fresh new things get so much attention.

That being said, I'm not trying to get published, so following the trends obviously isn't of great importance to me. *shrug*

NeuroFizz
09-21-2008, 07:25 PM
Really good stories that engage the reader, presented with quality writing, will probably continue to sell forever. Reader tastes are so diverse, intra-genre trends probably don't present much of a barrier, nor so much of a special opportunity.

Don
09-21-2008, 07:46 PM
That will be the day I stop writing. No vampire will ever descend through my fingers onto my screen. Unless it happens to be real vampires, ie vampire bats. I absolutely do not get this whole vampire thing.
Me either. I do have some evil bloodsuckers in my current WIP, but they're politicians and bureaucrats. :D

As for the OP, I think engaging characters, an interesting premise, and solid writing can sell a book more rapidly than following any particular trend.

circlexranch
09-21-2008, 07:55 PM
I notice it more in what I read than what I write.

I don't like the trend of romantic thrillers and romantic suspense. Some pretty good police procedural stories and tense murder mysteries are, in my humble opinion, being ruined by the top cop and the 'designated victim' tumbling into bed in the middle of the story. All to set up the 'tense' [not] big 'save' at the end of the book. Blech!

I also pass on spy and military thrillers that include a gratuitous romance. If I see on the book flap, 'Jaded and cynical operative Brad Spyguy is teamed with the sultry and seductive agent Ima Hoe to save the world from certain destruction. However, Brad doesn't know whether to follow his instincts, his orders, or his heart. . . . ' Double-blech . . .

I also don't like books that are plumped up with unnecessary description, romances, and subplots to make a mythical and arbitrary minimum wordcount demanded by agents and publishers.

All 'trends' I don't like to read and certainly don't like to write.

Shadow_Ferret
09-21-2008, 07:59 PM
Keeping aware of trends keeps you aware of trends and nothing more.

Unless you are someone who can write a book in just a few days and get it published nearly as quickly, you'll never be able to take advantage of a trend.

It takes me 2 years just to write the book. Figure another 2 years to get it published (as I've heard that time thrown around) and I'm looking at trying to capture a trend 4 years gone.

Toothpaste
09-21-2008, 08:38 PM
I've said this in the same thread in the children's writing section. To me trends are like the "rules" in writing. You need to learn what they are, but the next step is to forget them. And just write.

Oh and btw, my next book is so the opposite of trendy that I'm not sure anyone will ever read it. But I just have to write it. Not sure why, I feel ridiculous, but I can't stop myself. Sometimes you just gots to do what you gots to do.

ishtar'sgate
09-22-2008, 02:05 AM
I ignore trends. I can't "write to order" so I will write what I honestly feel like writing, for only then will I write well.
I agree. My current wip, which I'm hoping will be ready to shop around in April/09, is set in ancient Babylon. There's renewed interest in the city as a tourist destination plus Iraq has funds set aside and plans to build a commercial airport right near the archaeological site. My timing, although accidental, may be perfect!
Linnea