Tuesday, May 14, 2013


Originally I was going to do a follow up interview with Janine Spendlove, but that will have to wait till next month. Life likes to get in the way from time to time in the most unexpected ways both in a positive and negative ways.

So I am sitting here trying to figure out what to write; and I am drawing a blank. I am not sure if it is actual writer’s block or my mind is a whirl with life and I can’t focus on a single thought. Then it hits him.

I am a librarian and I haven’t really talked about that side of myself. And I am not going to, not really anyway. As I write this I realize today Dan Brown’s new book came out, which has nothing to do with YA Lit, but it did get me thinking about trends, which I am see in the ordering catalogues from various publishers - namely Baker and Taylor and Ingram.

I started to wonder what causes these trends to form. Why does one theme or idea hit over another, which then causes publishers to leap onto the bad wagon? Or what connects with the readers to cause this phenomenon to occur.

Why did Harry Potter become the multimillion, if not multibillion dollar success it became?
Why did Twilight hit it big and it did regardless of what you think about it?
Why did the Hunger Games become the big dystopian series it was?

Why is it taking so long for Steam Punk to catch on?
Where are all the Zombie books, weren’t they supposed to replace Vampires as the next big monster?
Why aren’t there more superhero based novels? They are huge in the box office?

Needless to say I don’t have the answers… I have never been that great at guessing trends when it comes to YA Lit. I really thought Zombies were about to have their day. But as I was looking through the ordering books I was shocked at the number of Roman and Greek God & Goddess themed books coming out. I know that the Percy Jackson’s books were huge, even though the movie didn’t make the money the studios thought. I am happy the second film is coming out. Is this why we are seeing all of these books? Honestly Percy Jackson hit it big a while back and isn’t really current or asked for at the library I work at. I could be wrong? But I am asking the question and putting it out there.  

I know most books hitting the shelf, let’s say this week, and have been in the hands of the publishers for at least a year or longer. But can a trend survive that length of time? Especially when the series which has inspired the initial trend has ended? I don’t have the answer.

And what about those long lasting books?

The classics?

The Hobbit?
Sherlock Holmes?
The works of Jules Vern?
Geek and Roman Mythology?
And countless others?

I have to wonder will anyone care about what I have written next month? A year from now? A year after my death? 50 years after my death? Etc. I hope you get my point?

I do think Harry Potter will become a classic.
I think the Hunger Games and Twilight will fade in time.

Writing is a tricky thing. Do we write to the trends or to things which might become trends? Or do we just write what we want to read or enjoy writing and just hope some else reads and likes it? And if it becomes a trend starter so be it?

Do we have to ask, as an author/writer, “Why do we write in the first place?”

I know for me I can’t imagine myself not writing, though it is strange getting back to writing after taking 3 years off to get my Masters in Library Science/Services.

And it is really thanks to Scaldcrow Games to get me writing again. It might not be the writing I thought I would be doing after my Masters, but it got me writing again and brought me back to my world of Sapphire City, the city of tomorrow, to-day! Will my 1940s Golden Age Hero Pulp be the next big trend? I doubt it, but I love writing it and the responses I am getting from the people who have gotten a taste of this world. A world I created.

I am going to talk more about the Amazing Pulp Adventures closer to the release of the multiple books being release later this year.

As I continue to write about trends, I realize trends overtime fade. Sometimes they run in cycles and will come back strong, like Vampires have done time and time again. Though there are some trends which come and go and never return as one-hit-wonders. Where does this staying power come from? The only thing I can think of is something deep inside us, something visceral which keeps drawing us back to certain themes and ideas we can’t in our human nature get enough of.

Trends - what an interesting thing you are.

I wonder if computer written books will become a new trend or not? Or if it will one day replace human writers? I hope not.

Oh trends where will you take us next?

I am curious to see. 


  1. I'm waiting for the dark elf trend, but I don't think I'll find that in YA...

  2. I just made that same comment about a week and a half ago (about the Greek mythology ones taking off). I don't know how so many get on that train at the same time... maybe it's some big conspiracy we don't know about? (Just kidding.) I can honestly say I wouldn't have guessed that the next thing after dystopian would be storylines re: gods and goddesses (I am liking quite a few of the ones I have read so far), though if you think about it, maybe the Avengers movie helped inspire that a bit. Question is, what will be next? (I say Bigfoot.) ;)

  3. Zombies have already had their day. None of the big zombie novels were as big as Harry Potter or The Hunger Games, but they were still there and popular. Though I hope the desire for zombie novels is still out there since I'm querying one of my own. :)