Monday, January 5, 2009

Ooh you trendy thing

Dave Freer posting:

The subject of trends in sf/fantasy came up on another pro-list I belong to. Because of the huge lag phase in publishing -- contracts can be several years old by the time the book hits the shelf -- next year’s trend is already written. So in fact the wannabe author or established figure putting in a proposal is probably better off just focussing on writing a good book. If you must try and second guess you need to do not next year, but 2-5 years into the future. None-the-less guessing probabilities is what we do in this business. Given economic gloom I’d say (judging by the successes of various movies) that now was the time for escapist upbeat novels without too much conspicuous consumption by the heroes. I’m putting my money on comfort food reads being even more popular (they STAY popular with readers - just not always with editors). The grapevine says that is getting through to some acquisition editors too (of course some always knew this). I’m putting money on nostalgia-sf, and a return to somewhat more insular Western themes. Big romantic space opera (Liaden?) and Victorian or regency ‘brave’ steampunk. Maybe even a bit Simak-ish rural idyll sf. Fantasy I am less certain. Romance in the more conventional senses will be an important element... urban fantasy, but less edgy and possibly historical? What do the rest of you think? I have proposals to write soon :-)


John Lambshead said...

Hey, I'm on the trend. I have a Victorian Steampunk - sort of - story in next months Universe!

Dave Freer said...

John, I could see that fitting both your style and the fact that you could apply some great research to it.

John Lambshead said...

Would you like an e-Arc?

Rowena Cory Daniells said...

So true, Dave.

I'm hoping to read that Regency fantasy of yours!

Cheers, R.

Dave Freer said...

eh, John, I would except for one thing... I'm the art director of the magazine you're publishing it in. In order to assign artists I read the stories. So I've already seen it. Bob Greyvenstein will be doing the art for it. I like his work.

Dave Freer said...

Rowena, I believe i have a trace of interest in a reworked proposal for that :-)

Sarah A. Hoyt said...

I do hope you have interest. I want to read it.

Oh, you mean from people who pay? Well, that too. but... I WANT to read it too!

Sarah -- I'll buy a copy!

Dave Freer said...

Sarah, well I think I must have at least 3 sales now! Hark! I reckon that's the sound a rampaging herd of cash-flush publishers beating their way to my door :-)(ah sweet dreams)