Supernatural? Or Realism?: YA trends

At the recent Publishing Perspectives conference (hosted by Scholastic) on the future of YA there were tweets (#PPteen), about shifts in the YA landscape away from the supernatural towards realism.

Are readers tired of vamps? Are they longing for gritty reality? (A PP wrap-up article here.)

Trends are part of the ebb and flow of our consumer-based, ephemeral world. Although it’s interesting to hypothesise about what might have jumped the shark and what might be on the horizon, trends can also be unpredictable.

As I’ve said before, every writer writes their own politics and their own ‘brand’ of fiction. Writers don’t live in bubbles, of course: we respond to the political, social, technological, physical and meteorological environments as much as the next person. We are products of our times.

We write in response to all these things and more, but we also write about those things that drive us as individuals. We have to: otherwise we’d have a hard time getting to the end of that tome.

I enjoy a spot of the fantastical occasionally, but mostly I enjoy realist fiction, so that’s the way Charlotte Aimes is coming out. So far: no complaints from Ms13.

On another note …

Upcoming event, Zurich

TiPE logo

The Independent Publishing Event is coming up on January 26th in Zürich, co-hosted by Nuance Words and The Alliance of Independent Authors.

Details can be found on the Nuance Words site:


  1. Besides Charlotte Aimes, do you have a few YA novels you recommend and adore? If you have a list elsewhere on this blog, can you point it out? One I’m fond of and my Ms13 is reading right now is called ‘How I live now’ by Meg Rosoff. Is this one you know?

  2. Thanks for the tip, Megan. Haven’t read it, but I’ll take a look at it when I get back to reading fiction. My YA reading has ground to a standstill because when I’m writing I find that my ‘tone’ is sometimes influenced by whatever I’m reading! Hence I read mainly non-fiction when I’m writing.

    I can recommend Slatebreakers (link on the blogroll navbar on the right) for good overviews of YA books. I adore To Kill a Mockingbird, also enjoyed The Hunger Games, and plan on reading Tokyo Heist this summer, on Ms13’s recommendation.

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