I took some excellent notes at the [RWA Spring Fling Conference] conference this weekend. Here’s the insider scoop —directly from workshops and the bar. (You have to guess which is actually the better source for “what’s hot” info.)
- Middle grade (all kinds—contemporary, historical, paranormal, fantastical). This is fiction aimed at the 10- to 14-year-old reader and runs in the 30,000 to 60,000 word count. Want an example? Follow Stefan Bachmann’s debut for THE PECULIAR at http://scathingjellyfish.blogspot.com.
- For contemporary romance, I heard people drooling over cowboys, westerns, and anything with a cat.
- Victorian historical romance (historical romance set in the later 1800s instead of the typical Regency time frame of 1814-1816).
- Anything and everything funny (like Susan Elizabeth Phillips, and since I’m biased about it, like Tiffany Reisz).
Sarah Megibow is an Associate Literary Agent at the Nelson Literary Agency. This post was taken from their most recent newsletter. To get more great industry news, subscribe to their newsletter.
I know this is going to make me seem clueless, but what the heck is literary fiction? Or Commercial fiction? Admittedly a dork.
Literary fiction is generally more serious in tone and message. It makes you think. The content is more about thought and feeling than plot and action (although there is plot and action in it). It is character driven and deals with emotions and experiences that are universal to the human condition. The writing style is also elegant, picturesque, descriptive.
Examples of literary fiction are: To Kill a Mockingbird, The Poisonwood Bible, and a lot of the titles you read in high school English classes. Or books that win The Pulitzer Prize for fiction and other literary awards.
Commercial fiction (also called mainstream or genre fiction) is generally more plot driven, faster paced, often deals with current social problems. Look at any fiction best-seller list to find examples of commercial fiction.
Nathan Bransford talks about it HERE.
Great article HERE.