Whether you’re an avid fiction reader or you dabble into fiction writing, you know that the publishing world is usually defined by trends. From vampire novels to young adult dystopia, fiction trends have come and gone.
While we don’t want to be mastered by current trends in reading and writing fiction, it is important to be aware of them because they dictate the decisions we make when we write and in choosing what books to read.
Here are some of the most important book trends:
1. Diversity in Fantasy and Sci-Fi
Diversity is a buzzword in publishing these days. Literary agents are always looking for books written by marginalized authors or about the marginalized sector. There is a current trend in featuring underrepresented characters in fantasy and sci-fi such as people of color, LGBTQ+, powerful women, the disabled, and more. Veronica Roth’s latest novel, Carve the Mark has a main character cursed by chronic pain. Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse is a post-apocalyptic novel set in a Navajo reservation. Barbary Station by R.E. Stearns features a functioning lesbian relationship in fiction.
2. Alternative media is driving best sellers
A big trend in publishing is the popularity of alternative writing platforms such as Wattpad. Wattpad is an important incubation ground for authors of tomorrow. The site hosts more than 500 million stories across the globe. Traditional publishers have started looking for new talents on Wattpad. This is a savvy move because popular Wattpad authors bring with them very loyal readers as well.
3. Stories that reflect and critique our turbulent times.
Around the world, political turmoil, civil unrest, the repercussion of climate change are always in the headlines. Watching the news is often stranger than fiction. As a result, more stories that reflect and critique our turbulent times are being written. Whether they’re within the genre of political thrillers, science fiction, or dystopian fiction, many readers are looking for stories that people feel good and give us hope.