Saturday, April 10, 2010
RIDING THE HOT TREND
This topic really needs a post of its own, because it's controversial. Every day we read agent blogs and tweets telling us to avoid trends. I understand where this is coming from, but I also think a hot trend can be an unpublished writer's foot in the door.
My friend Linda, who used to write wonderful historical romances under the name Jessica Douglas, used to say you don't want to be the first wagon through, and you don't want to be the last, but that place in the middle? Sweet.
If you recognize a hot trend you'd love to write, and if you can write very quickly, I say go for it. It's an opportunity. And when I say write fast, I mean have that manuscript ready to go in eight months. Because trends can turn overnight, which is why agents are always warning against them. I lied. Actually, they don't turn overnight. From my observation, it takes a minimum of two years for a trend to really go belly up. Once saturation point is recognized, doors to hot trends slam one at a time, and with each slam your chances of selling go down.
A slow writer should avoid jumping on a trend, because there's nothing more heartbreaking than working years on a story no one will even look at. If you can't have that story ready to go in under a year, then maybe trends aren't for you.