Trending - by Donna

This week our topic is TRENDS and the first rule is pretty simple.


If you're trying to write for a trend, then you're already working behind the wave.  By the time a book is sold and published, the trend is often passed (think vampires, etc.). As agent Steve Kasdin of Curtis Brown Ltd. says, "I am NOT interested in SF/Fantasy, Memoirs, Vampires and writers trying to capitalize on trends.”

That said, could there be another blockbuster vampire book just waiting to be discovered?  Agent Sarah Davies of Greenhouse Literary says:

While I’d never say I’m uninterested in any paranormal romances, stories about ‘girls with powers’, or dystopia, you just need to be aware that there are a lot of them around, which means yours really has to sing. It needs to do something different and fresh with the genre. One of the keys to this is VOICE. Any story can feel fresh and vibrant if it has a unique voice and a different spin.
With all that said, I prefer to listen to what agents/editors say they are looking for now - or maybe what they don't see enough - rather than trends.   My agent, Sarah Davies at Greenhouse Literary, wrote a fantastic blog on this topic and I was honored to be included as an example. Even though this blog post is over a year old, I still hear some of the same desires from editors and agents mentioned over and over again - like adventurous middle grade, contemporary young adult, and intense thrillers.

Sometimes I feel a bit schizophrenic.  There has to be a market for what I want to publish, yet I shouldn't follow trends and look to what's selling now to drive my ideas.

Be fresh.

Be unique.

And then do it again.

Only different.

No problem, right?

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