1. OnesieWrites

    OnesieWrites Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2017
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    14

    Audience for strange and off trend stories?

    Discussion in 'By the Genre' started by OnesieWrites, Aug 31, 2017.

    So a lot of popular novels I've seen seem to fall within the young adult fiction/romance genre and for an aspiring author who prefers the weird, strange and odd tales of fiction, often loving the works of H.P Lovecraft and Junji Ito, i was wondering if there is a viable audience for strange stories with strange characters.

    I often times write what i would want to read myself and for fun, but various authors and blogs talk about looking at market demographics to write a successful novel and i was wondering whether or not i should modernise my novel (love triangle, appeal to the younger audience) or just write what i want and hope for a small cult following.

    My book does have a death match theme to it as i loved the original Battle Royal, Lord of the Flies, Hurricane Gold and it allows plenty of character development to explore nature and various themes, but i honestly dislike cheesy romance and plot armour.

    Thoughts on this? Thanks!
     
  2. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Get off my Balzac... Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2017
    Messages:
    6,558
    Likes Received:
    12,911
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    Short answer: If you want to publish traditionally your book has to fall into a genre somewhere and meet that genre's expectations within reason. It's a buyer's market to the millionth degree. The agents and publishers don't need to take chances. They want what sells (rightfully so) and that's it. You sound like you're inclined toward horror or new weird fantasy (if that's even still a thing), so I would start there. No publisher will buy it if they don't think they're going to make money, so you have to follow the pack to a certain extent. You can't actively shoot for a cult following... that kind of just happens, and even cult novels have to sell quite a few books to attain that sort of standing. I wouldn't write romance or YA just for the hell of it, and while I'm not exactly sure what you mean by "modernizing" your novel, if it's a point where nobody is interested in reading it because it's archaic (??), then, yeah, you're dead on arrival already.
     
    123456789 and Fernando.C like this.
  3. Mouthwash

    Mouthwash Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2012
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    192
    If I can mentally autofill in the plotlines and character arcs of a book, it's not worth reading.

    To the OP: my strategy is to just build up a solid community of people who read and appreciate my work. If I ever make money off of it, it'll be because of organic merit, not because it made $50 more in a month than another book and got a deal with Books-a-Million.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2017
    jannert and Fernando.C like this.
  4. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Get off my Balzac... Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2017
    Messages:
    6,558
    Likes Received:
    12,911
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    They don't care.
     
    Cave Troll and Trish like this.
  5. Mouthwash

    Mouthwash Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2012
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    192
    They're idiots. In a business where any single product can make millions of dollars (or nothing at all), playing it safe is the definition of Black Swan blindness. I recall that Harry Potter only got accepted after the publisher had his own child read it and asked what she thought (apparently a novel idea to children's book publishers).
     
    jannert and Fernando.C like this.
  6. OnesieWrites

    OnesieWrites Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2017
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    14
    Thanks!
     
  7. Laurin Kelly

    Laurin Kelly Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2016
    Messages:
    2,371
    Likes Received:
    3,788
    Honestly, the chances of a book becoming largely successful is so slight that IMO you should just write what you like, because at least you get to enjoy writing some parts of it at least. Writing a book is such hard work, I can't imagine slogging through trying to write something I wasn't genuinely enthusiastic about.
     
  8. OnesieWrites

    OnesieWrites Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2017
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    14
    Good point, thanks!
     
  9. Iain Aschendale

    Iain Aschendale Benevolent Ochlocrat Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2015
    Messages:
    15,925
    Likes Received:
    30,878
    Location:
    Seat 29e, Air Gradia 452
    Yup. I'm going to write what I want to write and hope that other people like it. If they do, I'll make lots o' money, but if they don't, I'll still have my hobby and my little blog. Also, quite honestly, I'm not skilled enough as a writer to write something I don't like, if that makes any sense. I tried to write something sweet and romantic once, and all my female readers said that they could see I was a horror author first and foremost. I don't know how to write not-horror, so the concept of trying to shoehorn myself into a completely different genre or voice is just foolish. Of course, other people may be (probably are) a lot more mentally flexible than I am, so...
     
    Rosacrvx and Cave Troll like this.
  10. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    17,364
    Likes Received:
    19,139
    Location:
    Scotland
    Writing, reading and publishing demographics are changing so fast I can't keep up. What hasn't changed, for me anyway, is the pleasure I get from reading a damn good book. So I will write the kind of book I would love to read. Why not? I have no interest in making writing a 'career,' as I'm retired. So making money from my writing isn't the reason I write.

    If you want to make lots of money with traditional publishers, you do one of two things:

    1) You chase the market, and write exactly what publishers are currently buying (which may well change by the time you finish your book.)

    They SAY they want 'original,' but if you believe them, you're kidding yourself. They want a book (with a few name changes and plot tweaks) just like the last book they sold in large numbers. Preferably from the same author. And be prepared to give them many more similar books in fairly rapid succession. Most authors today who make enough money to quit their other jobs are authors who have broken into a market, and are now producing more of the same at a regular rate. If you struggle to write a book a year, that's going to be a handicap for you. If you only have one good book in you, that's going to REALLY be a handicap, no matter how good that book may be.

    2) Write something that's so stunningly original the publishers just can't resist taking a chance on it—and trust that somebody will actually read your query and ask for a submission. And you'll still be expected to follow up (soon) with more of the same.


    Making wads of money with self-publishing is still an undeveloped skill. But if you want to write what YOU want to write and get it 'out there,' then that's really your only choice at the moment. (Unless your writing appeals to Literary publishers, who are more amenable to new approaches and subject matter than the other genre publishers, but will still be choosy about style and restrictive about length until you've proved yourself.)

    While reading itself is undergoing lots of change, what does seem to be unchanged is the love of storytelling. It's the medium and marketing that has changed, not the end result. Where it will go next is anybody's guess.

    So, basically ...there are much easier ways to earn a living than writing novels, but there are still people out there who love to read them. Everybody seems to love a story told in some fashion ...printed word, TV, movies, etc. So trim your expectations to reality, and if you want to tell a story, find a way to do it that brings YOU pleasure. Then share your pleasure as best you can. Who knows? You might become The Next Big Thing.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2017
  11. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    17,421
    Likes Received:
    26,253
    Location:
    Where cushions are comfy, and straps hold firm.
    Yes, I am inclined to agree with everybody else on this point.
    You write mainstream, and you have a better shot (unless you
    break into a niche community like some do). Otherwise you
    epub and hope someone outside of your beta readers reads
    and likes your book. And that is a feat in and of itself, seeing
    as every Tom, Dick, and Harry can epub these days. So you
    really are playing the odds going either route when it comes
    to pubbing.

    If you want to make a quick buck, write a ton of Erotica or
    some other not so commonly read niche, and see what sticks.
    Or just write a ton of shorts and flood the market with your
    work that you commonly write, and see what gets read.

    It is all hit or miss really. So write what you want and lower
    your odds of traditional publishing, or just write a copy and
    paste story as fast as possible, in the hopes that you will get
    in on that market before the trends change.

    I say find out what readers are saying about your particular
    genres, the good, the bad, and the ugly. There are a lot of
    readers of YA/Romance that will be blunt and honest about
    what they like, and what they think is over done. From what
    I have heard from that particular community is that they
    don't like love triangles as much as the market would want
    you to believe.

    Good luck. :supersmile:

     
    Fiender_ and Iain Aschendale like this.
  12. OnesieWrites

    OnesieWrites Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2017
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    14
    Thanks!
     
  13. Rosacrvx

    Rosacrvx Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2016
    Messages:
    572
    Likes Received:
    353
    Location:
    Lisbon, Portugal
    So very true!
     
  14. Damien Loveshaft

    Damien Loveshaft Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2017
    Messages:
    125
    Likes Received:
    49
    Location:
    Louisiana
    I write a combination of the two, weird fiction/romance-erotica thing... I think there's an audience, albeit smaller than YA. there's an audience for almost anything if you do it well. You do you and someone will recognize the genuine writings you make. (Like me, I like it.)
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice