Monday, November 14, 2011

The New Trend for 2012

Yes, I know it isn't New Years and it isn't time for those resolutions and things we do to think about the coming year, but I wanted to write about it. Besides, all of the big box stores have had Christmas Decorations up since July 4th so starting now isn't that strange.

I was thinking about what will be hot and not for 2012. No, this isn't what you will see on the shelves. Those books have been bought 3 years ago and are hovering over us like planes in a flight pattern. I am talking about the books that editors and agents will be wanting to see.

I know what you're all thinking. "But Scott, you tell us to never follow trends." You're darn right. Don't follow the trend! But, if you have a project like this, you might find yourself in the right position for it.

CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE I have been saying this since Orlando RWA 2 years ago and the editors are still begging for these stories. I hear a lot of editors calling these "women's fiction" but when I really get them talking, we are looking at REAL stories about REAL people without baggage. Hmmm, sound familiar from what I have been talking about? In any case, I see a real shift in this area.

PARANORMAL Sorry to say this, but I do believe we will see a huge decline in the really weird here. Look, even the paranormals we've been seeing on TV aren't that over the top. These are real people with the tendency to, every now and then, bite someone for blood. The point is, I don't think they will be wanting weird. You have to find something new that will really suck you in (and not like a vampire). My bet? - Ghosts.

ROMANTIC SUSPENSE - This one really has me stumped. I honestly wouldn't be shocked if this goes away. All of the stories I have seen (both published and new) focus more on the suspense and less on the romance.

HISTORICAL - I think they are ready to move out of the standard realms. I think Medieval and those ancient stories are going to go away. Regencies will continue but with the standard authors. I don't see the editors buying new authors in this time period. I do think we will see some things opening up in new countries and new time periods. My bet is WWI an WWII. Sorry, the publishers, IMHO are still afraid to do a Civil War story, (although personally, this is your new Regency Romance and if any publishers are reading this and want to trust me on this, email me. I have a couple of authors that are ready for this).

INSPIRATIONALS - Amish is out. I am sorry to say this, but editors treated Amish the same way they treated Chick Lit. We simply had too much of it. What I do see, however, are more real life inspirational stories with a serious reduction in Bible Quoting. These will be contemporary romances.

YA While I don't represent this, I am going to talk about it. YA isn't YA anymore and the backlash will happen soon from the school librarians. What these people have been claiming as YA's are nothing more than your standard adult romance with teens. The librarians cannot put these books in the school and will return to the older formats. Look for YA's dealing with traditional teen issues and especially multicultural. Think Glee here.

So. that's what you'll see editors buying.



  1. Thanks for the info. Any idea where a romance with the an Egyptian god as the villain would fit?

  2. Thanks for the info. I think, as authors, this information is invaluable. My barely started WIP takes place in the years leading up to the Revolutionary War. Is that time period a tough sell?

  3. I, for one, would love to see more WWI or WWII romances. Love that period in history.

    Thank you for sharing, always great to read your blog.

  4. Does this mean we're done with vampires for a little while? I can't say I would hate that...

  5. Ursula LeCoeur

    Enough already with Regency! America's Gilded Age (1880s & 1890s) has wealth, masked balls,carriages and servants with Victorian tension between males and females. A great time period for romance.

  6. I hope you're right, Scott! I have two completed multicultural YA manuscripts that focus on traditional teen issues related to culture and identity.

  7. But no baggage, no story. Yes? No? I was told to take your POV character and throw as much stuff at them as possible. Was going to submit my almost-finsihed women's fiction to you, but not thinking my character may have too much baggage. Let's see, she has 3 pieces. Wonder if that will be okay.

  8. Scott, one of your clients Helen forwarded the link to your blog. Very interesting post, especially about ghosts coming back into play for paranormals. This means I have hope for my three book series (G).

    Thanks again for the invaluable information!

  9. Thanks for this post, Scott. It's got me really excited for the future. Here's hoping my 1920s romance novellas become hot stuff!

  10. It was interesting that you comment about the new paranormal interest swinging from vampires to ghosts, since as you may remember, mine is exactly that-a ghost love story with a sequel outlined. Wish me luck as I continue working on the fine tuning and editing. Initial reviews and critiques through RWA contests was very helpful and positive. It'll be coming out in ebook format in 2012. Although I know you're not a big fan of ebooks, your blogs and insights are very helpful Scott. Thank you.