Ask The Editor

January 9, 2009

Why do Young Adult novels dominate bestseller list?

During the years that Harry Potter books were selling millions more than comparable adult fiction, we could have chalked up that success story to the charm of the teen wizard tales.

But what do we make of the current bestseller list? Stephanie Meyer’s novels about teen vampires are, by all accounts, less charming and yet,  her young adult stories of teen bloodsuckers are in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 8th positions on the Wall Street Journal’s bestseller list of fiction. A Harry Potter title is in 4th place while Brisingr, a dragon tale for young adults, is in 14th place.

That makes six young adult books in the top 15.

What should authors take away from this? It’s difficult to say. If you start writing a young adult novel now to take advantage of this trend, by the time you’re done, there’s a chance that the trend will be done, too. But if you’re already an author of young adult fiction, you might find agents and acquiring editors more receptive to reviewing your work, especially if there is an element of the other-worldly or whimsy in it.

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2 Comments »

  1. I guess fantasy sells. Books about normal people just don’t register well with readers anymore.

    Comment by leafless — January 9, 2009 @ 2:15 pm | Reply

  2. UGH. I never read fantasy!
    Beth Fehlbaum, author
    Courage in Patience, a story of hope for those who have endured abuse
    http://courageinpatience.blogspot.com
    Ch. 1 is online!

    Comment by bethfehlbaum — January 9, 2009 @ 7:49 pm | Reply


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