Thursday, November 11, 2010

Trends Are Like Worms

Robin by cruadinx
Last night, thunderstorms rolled through the area, pouring down rain that drew all the earthworms to the surface. Early this morning, the yard is full of robins, eager to eat up all the worms. A few hours later, they were gone, along with all the worms.

This reminded me of trends in publishing. Something new and different and exciting bursts onto the scene, usually because an editor and a publisher took a chance on something unconventional, and suddenly everyone wants one. Every house wants a big [insert latest trend here] in their lineup. The eat them up like worms after a rain and then, suddenly, the feeding frenzy dries up.

In my brief time in this industry, I've seen it happen a few times. First it was chick lit. Bridget Jones' Diary and Sex and the City threw the door open, and everyone (myself included) rushed in. Only I was too late, and all the worms were gone. The same thing happened with vampires, thank you Twilight (I avoided that one), and now dystopian YA (in the wake of The Hunger Games).

The hard part about this for a writer is that sometimes (oftentimes) something about a trend is born of a common experience, a common inspiration that speaks to a lot of us at the same time. But, as the old saying goes, the early bird gets the worm. You need to be ahead of the trend, you need to start the trend, or you'll be late to the yard and all the worms will be gone.

My question for everyone today is:
Have any thoughts on upcoming trends? What do you see on the horizon in fiction? What do you want to see there?


nymfaux said...

I was just thinking about triplets who find out they are descendants of Medusa and have to save the world--I think it's going to be really hot!!!

---oh, wait, that's YOUR new book...Well, I still think it's going to be really hot!!!! And I absolutely can't wait for it!!! :)

As a reader, I don't think paranormal is done by any means!!!--It's just a matter of having a good story to tell...

As for chick-lit, I'm LOVE LOVE LOVING EYE CANDY in a way I was never able to connect to Bridget Jones' Diary and S&tC, thank goodness you're sharing on your blog--I would really have hated to miss out on your awesomeness!!!! :)

Sullivan McPig said...

Werepigs!! They'll be the next big thing.

Hey! I think it's a cool idea!!

Cath's Chatter said...

I don't think paranormal anything is in any way 'done' or 'had its time'
I was reading para when it was bordering on horror back in the eighties and it was a more male writer dominated world....but it was still para.
Plus, you fantastic ladies who are writing now DO IT SO MUCH BETTER!!!!!!!
I for one will never have enough paranormal reading material♥

Patricia Lynne said...

I've been seeing a lot of angel YA books so I'm going to lean towards angels as the next big thing. (to bad for me and my little vampire story lol)

Helen Lowe said...

I suspect Steampunk may already be the next big thing, but quite a bit of it still has supernatural/paranormal overtones (or should that be undertones)--and there's always a place for anything that's well done.

Claire Dawn said...

I've been seeing a lot of contemp YA dealing with death.

SandyG265 said...

I think that trends aren't necessarily new - they just recycle. Vampires were trendy in the late 60's early 70s. Then they became popular again. But I think that paranormal books will be around for quite a while.