I had a really long and wonderful talk on the phone with my agent the other day. The purpose of the call was to brainstorm ideas for the sequel to the second book in my KNIGHT’S CURSE series. However, my agent hadn’t had a chance to finish reading DARKEST KNIGHT, so it was challenging to discuss follow-up events to a story she wasn’t completely familiar with yet. But the call was far from wasted. We went on to talk about other things.
We discussed story ideas in general and what editors are looking for. I wanted to know if fantasy and paranormal stories are still in demand, and she said the market is so glutted right now that the rejections she sees are often because the publisher already has something similar to what’s on offer.
So what’s a writer to do? Are all the good ideas used up already? I think you know the answer to that one. No.
However, the task for coming up with an original story is tougher than ever. The demands on our creativity has never been greater. It’s up to us to put a new spin on what’s already been done to make it irresistible to editors and then to readers.
Liz and I talked a little about KNIGHT’S CURSE and how different it is from anything else out there. That was a problem when the manuscript first went out on submission because there was no yard stick to measure it against. There’s still nothing to compare it to. That eventually turned out to be a good thing in a market that has become eager for something different.
So while I’m waiting to hear back from both my editor and my agent on DARKEST KNIGHT, I’ve come up with an idea for a totally new and different paranormal story. I’ve never seen this idea done quite this way, but it appeals to me and I plan to have fun with it, just like I did with KNIGHT’S CURSE.
Writers of fantasy and paranormal fiction are kind of lucky when you think about it. It’s such an imaginative genre that there are no limits to where you can take it. Any writer with a good imagination has a great opportunity to get published in any genre. It’s all in the spinning.
If you’re a writer, do you consider the idea for your book original and different? If you’re a reader, what would you like to see in a fantasy or paranormal story?