>Factoring in market and trend
In the world of romantic fiction, there’s always going to be talk of one sub-genre or another’s sales doing well or declining. There will always be some authors who jump on the “what’s hot” bandwagon. Some of them will actually sell and make money. Others will keep jumping to the latest trend. To my way of thinking, whether or not some of those people who sell to trend LOVE what they’re writing is another thing entirely. But I digress.
While I wouldn’t recommend letting the market dictate what you will write, a strong indicator of what’s selling in romance is publisher Harlequin/Silhouette. They’ve been around for decades and it’s not like they’re going out of business any time soon, though they do have their ups and downs. Writers panic when a line closes and there’s doomsday talk that runs rampant around the various groups and loops. But there’s usually another line or two to take it’s place. Sometimes several open before they close one. The choices are mind-boggling.
While the hot commodity right now (if you’ll pardon the pun) is erotic romance, H/S continues to have several lines that don’t have sex scenes in them at all, or “closed-door” love scenes, and they sell well. Inspirational romance sales are on the increase and a new line has opened up – inspirational romantic suspense. Depending on who you talk to, historical sales are either on the rise or declining. Personally, I think it depends on the content and era in history. Paranormal romance is huge. So you see, the choices are many.
Reading wise, any or all of those mentioned may grace my bookshelves from time to time, but a steady diet of any of them doesn’t interest me either. Overwhelmingly, I like present day romances, which is why I settled on writing contemporary romance.
H/S has many contemporary lines that sell very well, so when you’re targeting series romance, that kind of a decision isn’t definitive enough. You have to know not only the type of romance, but the specific line you’re most likely to sell to. (Some people, if prolific enough, can target more than one line.) This brings me to Part 3: Personal preferences.
To be continued…