Apparently dystopia has run its course. After posting about Veronica Roth’s Divergent I felt this article was a great juxtaposition. Considering Divergent IS a dystopia it obviously hasn’t run its course yet. HOWEVER, Roth got on that bandwagon when it was popular and since its a trilogy she still has a hold. Had the Divergent manuscript been read now in 2013 perhaps we wouldn’t even know who Roth was and she’d be out living her life like a normal 25-year-old.
“Certain YA trends—paranormal love triangles, apocalyptic aftermaths—have become played out; what was once a fledgling segment of the market, kids 12 and up, has matured into a vital category.”
New trends are coming to the young adult field. According to the publishing agents quoted in this Publisher’s Weekly article the new this is contemporary realistic fiction. Books such as Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell and The Fault in our Stars by John Green are mentioned. Not all realistic fiction is a bestseller, the agents say what makes them stick are “a strong voice and a good hook.” These agents also say they’re looking for authors who can be “category killers” like Ellen Hopkins. From what they say, readers aren’t necessarily looking for this I don’t think. Editors and publishers are looking for people like Hopkins who can monopolize a certain category of YA. She particularly has the free verse knocked out to her advantage and typically writes about “hard hitting subjects.” To me this means they’re looking for a go-to. If a young adult were to come ask me for a book about hard topics these agents want us to automatically think of their books, of Hopkins.
THANK GOD there’s also a section where publisher’s say they’re thrilled to be putting stand alone novels out there again. I am SO strung out on the trilogies. I still haven’t read any of the book 2s I mentioned months ago.
“There was a time when it was actually easier to sell a trilogy than a stand-alone but today it’s probably even odds. Publishers are being more cautious, wanting to see how the first book performs before committing.” Adams also senses the real fatigue may not be from publishers but from the retail market. “I think the backlash is more from book buyers than editors, but it’s still an important consideration.”
Check out the full article for more about whats new in YA.