Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Predicting the "next big thing" in romance writing.

I recently read an article about the RWA Conference of a few weeks ago. Experts gathered to discuss all manner of things romance-wise. One being what was going to be "hot" and what was "dead" in romance. Please. If writers know anything, we know that the experts know jack about setting trends. Experts are usually waaaaay behind them. Remember FSOG, anyone? After soccer moms the world over discovered that book, regular publishers and self-publishers, and every hack who could put words on paper (screen?) couldn't churn out inferior, mediocre or superior clones and press "print" fast enough to slack the ladies' thirst. And the clones keep coming. So as long as there is someone somewhere willing to read about Anna and Christian clones, there will be an audience.

So, what's "dead"? According to the experts it seems to be paranormals. Specifically, all things with vampires. Really? Vamps may not be burning up the book charts like before but they ain't goin' anywhere. I mean Ward, Kenyon and Cole may have ridden those gravy trains into the ground but you can't write off another author out there with a new take on the Undead. So, no. I don't agree with the experts.

What's trending? Contemporaries are hot. Meh. Any kind seem to be hot. I really don't care for contemporaries of any kind. The cloying, homogeneity of small-town, contemp romances.puts me off. The wounded, tattered youth of New Adult sets my teeth on edge. Cowboy romances are not for me. Neither are MC romances. Couldn't write one of those to save my life. Male/Male romance, not to be confused with gay fiction is still going strong and probably will continue to be strong until the mostly straight women who read it, get their fill. But that won't die out either.

My prediction for the "next big thing"? It will be the ripe, untilled battlefield of multicultural. There is so much there still untried. Or more correctly, there is so much there undiscovered, discounted and ignored. When this breaks out, and it will, it won't be pretty. Authors who have been writing it for more than a hot minute won't be thrilled as new kids come into the spotlight and start claiming that they "invented" it. Me? I'll be ducking, covering, writing and hiding the pointed sticks.

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