Genre Talk

What’s the Next Big Thing in PNR?

I am here

So, I’m reading a zombie menage right now. So far, I’m rather enjoying the story.  I Am Here is told from the single POV of one hero, the beta of the trio. As I’ve stated here many times, I love a good beta hero. And the premise itself is sufficiently disturbing. I know, I’m late to the party. Zombie stories are so 2012, right? But can’t a book like this still be relevant? Have we all gotten over our fear of a brain-eating apocalypse already?

I guess that brings up today’s question:

What’s in in creatures these days?

An industry expert told me recently that paranormal romance is very hard to sell right now. We’ve been hearing for awhile that vampires are done, done, and done. Ditto shifters. I heard that Steampunk has come and gone. Post-apocalyptic? Zombies? Fairies? Witches and wizards? I admit I’m a little glad that dinosaur erotica thing didn’t seem to last long, but I swear I do not judge if that’s your jam. You’ve got a few vampire authors on this here blog, so we’re kinda hoping that whole vampires are “dead” thing is still hogwash (ha). And we’re pretty sure it is.

So many things are supposedly out in paranormal, it makes me wonder what’s in? What’s next? What’s HOT?

I keep hearing these various flavors of paranormal fiction are going the way of the dodo, and yet I still believe there’s a reader for every story. Yes, maybe even the dino-erotica. I just released my first contemporary novel, One Week, and while many of my paranormal readers have gotten on board with the new series (thanks, guys!), just as many have stated that they love my Chronicles of Yavn series but they’re not interested if One Week doesn’t contain any vampires, thank you. And that’s totally cool. Everyone is free to love, read, or not read, whatever fluffs their cushions. That’s the awesomeness of all the genres available to us in the marketplace. You love angsty YA? Grab your tissues and go to town. You dig on dino love? Rock out with your horns out.

I also think this supports my theory that there is still a market for all flavors of paranormal romance, and the readers are still looking for more. I also think new readers enter the marketplace every day. Teenagers grow into adults. Folks who have never read a shifter book decide one day they’re feeling adventurous to check out a little interspecies love, and so on.

But what do you think? Is there a next big thing coming in PNR? Minotaur romance, perhaps? Cyclops love? Spider shifters? Is everything old, new again? Are vampires and weres still where it’s at? (See what I did there? Oh god, I need more coffee.)

Or is PNR going away?

Nah, I didn’t think so either. 😉



7 thoughts on “What’s the Next Big Thing in PNR?

  1. I’m not into zombie love (I prefer more George Romero zombies–same goes for Vamps. Give me Lestat over a drippy love sick Edward Cullen type, any day.) But spider shifters? I’m out. You wouldn’t be able to sell that to me with a bow on top–or a cute fella on the cover. No way, no how! *shudder* To me though I’ve always loved fantasy novels, I just figure it became uncool to call it fantasy so the publishers started labeling it paranormal, tossing a love thread in, packaging it for romance, and voilà! They created a new subgenre. Let’s be honest, magic as a plot fixture has always existed, since the days of fairy tales. So it may die in romance, but it’ll live on somewhere, either on the fantasy shelves, or the horror shelves, or the literary shelves. It’ll be there–and thank god for it. As long as a story has magic, I’m very happy. 🙂

    • LOL. Poor spider shifters. Your perspective is interesting and probably has a certain amount of accuracy, given that the only real difference between Urban Fantasy and PNR seems to be the requirement of a happy ending. I’m with you though, I’m intrigued by almost any story with some sort of mystical element, so long as the author can make it believable. 🙂

  2. Frankly I think the most versatile creatures are vampires and I still enjoy the imaginations of writers like susannah Sandlin and Lynda Hilburn and looking forward to Deborah Harness’s third book I can’t get into zombies (not sure if that’s a pun or not) My creature, the one I write about is a soul collector for the devil.

  3. Elisabeth, it’s a great question! And congratulations on your contemporary release!

    I’m like you–a fan of anything mystical, when it’s well written. I think nowadays, after reading so many paranormal books, what stands out to me are a fresh premise, a new world, and a great author voice. I don’t know if there will be a next big thing as much as just a rising to the top of some I’ve got two paranormal books in my RITA pile, and they are both very different from what I usually read, so I’m looking forward to trying out those new authors.

  4. I think I’ve been hearing “paranormal is out” for almost three years now, so I say we’re due for a resurgence. It’s all cyclical, right? With the absolute tidal wave of paranormal and science fiction shows on TV right now, I can’t help but think paranormal will rise again, fangs and all. Vampires are pretty hard to kill.

    Congrats on your contemporary release!

  5. LOL @ ‘rock out with your horns out’ 😀

    I’ve written a zombie romance, give or take. The hero is a re-animated dead guy. A lot of people think it’s too icky. Some people absolutely love it because it *is* icky.

    I would read a spider shifter romance… what an awesome conflict 🙂 …but then, I like horror and dark romance and things that go squelch. There are a few books out there based on your more insectoid races. Hailey Edwards has a series like this.

    And seriously, I think there’s a market out there to be reached at the horror end of paranormal romance. Ghosts, dead people, killers, monsters.

    I think a lot of people are sick of vampires because they’ve become too sanitised. Vampires as bad guys could make a comeback.

    That’s one thing I liked about the recent DRACULA tv series – though it did have its flaws, lack of proper villains first and foremost – it didn’t shrink from the violent, ugly side of Dracula’s life. Dude’s a murderer. A sexy, urbane, romantic murderer, to be sure, but a murderer of innocents no less. Same with BEING HUMAN (at least the UK version, haven’t seen the US).

    Easier on tv, though. Cast a hot dude, and people will watch anything. Not so easy in a book 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s