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Brain Picking: Hot New Trends and Writers

This coming Monday, I'm doing a presentation for a group of Michigan Librarians entitled "Beyond Sparkly Vampires: Hot New Writers and Trends in Science Fiction and Fantasy". I have a little over an hour to try to introduce these people to the popular subgenres and up-and-coming writers.

I've got a rough outline put together with some names and titles already. However, the LJ brain collective is vast, with far more knowledge and memory than any single drone, so I figured I'd open this up and ask for suggestions.

Topics I'm planning to touch on include:

  • Series vs. Standalones (with the series still coming in as the most popular)

  • Young Adult
  • (still huge)
  • Media Tie-ins
  • (movies, TV, video games ... look at Buckell's latest Halo novel)
  • Urban Fantasy
  • (both serious and not-so-serious ... and yes antonstrout, I'm planning to mention you)
  • Paranormal Romance
  • (and possibly a few other "boundary-blurring" categories)
  • Nonwhite/Nonmale/Nonstraight Protagonists (don't know if this is a trend, but it's something I want to talk about)
My questions for the group mind:

1. What hot books/writers would you suggest including as examples for these categories?
2. What hot new trends am I missing? (Aside from the were-jaguars)

Thanks in advance.

I love events like this. They invited me as a Michigan author to come speak to a room full of librarians. And then they're going to pay me for my time? Gosh, let me think about it.

I did set a rule for myself, though. The obvious temptation is to tell all of these wonderful librarians about ME and MY BOOKS and GO BUY THEM NOW NOW NOW! So I figure I'll introduce myself as a local author, give a little bit of my background and credentials (i.e., why the heck should they listen to me), and then say right up front that I'm not going to talk about my books until the final five minutes. I figure a five minute indulgence in a 75-minute presentation is reasonable, and it lets me shut off that sales/publicity part of my brain for the other 70 minutes.

Tune in tomorrow for a Very Special Episode of LJ, as Jim finally confronts his parentheses addiction. (Or maybe not...)

Nightmare, by Steven Harper
Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy
Red Hood's Revenge


Apr. 23rd, 2009 01:17 pm (UTC)
Faeries! The faery craze is making its way into books. I'm seeing more and more books about faeries in both YA, Romance, and in the adult Sci-fi/Fantasy sections.
"Wicked Lovely" by Melissa Marr (I just read this and enjoyed it very much)
"Tithe" by Holly Black
"The Fairy Godmother" by Mercedes Lackey

This is just my prediction and I don't have anything to back it up other then my own observations but we'll be seeing Steampunk showing up in novels (in a directly wrtten to be steampunk sense). North America is a little slow picking up these treads compared to other places but anything Steampunk is huge right now in the convention scene, online, and its going mainstream. It will only be a matter of time before authors write steampunk inspired books and the industry starts seeking the good ones.

Edited at 2009-04-23 01:19 pm (UTC)
Apr. 23rd, 2009 01:32 pm (UTC)
I'd also add rj_anderson's first book, which was published as "Knife" in the UK and will be out next week as "Faery Rebels: Spellhunter" in the US.

ETA: edited for her correct username.

Edited at 2009-04-23 01:33 pm (UTC)
Apr. 23rd, 2009 03:29 pm (UTC)
I nearly forgot about graphic novels. many NA authors are releasing graphic novel tie-ins or graphic versions of their books.
"The Dresden Files: Welcome to the Jungle" by Jim Butcher
"Wicked Lovely: Desert Tales" by Melissa Marr
"Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter" By Laurell K. Hamilton
Apr. 23rd, 2009 04:05 pm (UTC)
This is just my prediction and I don't have anything to back it up other then my own observations but we'll be seeing Steampunk showing up in novels (in a directly wrtten to be steampunk sense).

Already happening.


Jim C. Hines


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