Monday, January 07, 2013


Publisher's Lunch had a bit of "information" that caught my eye recently. Editors at Scholastic's book fairs and clubs along with their trade editors have released a forecast of 10 top trends in children's books for 2013.

Some of you who write children's books may want to pay attention to the list. Then again...maybe not.

One "timely topic" is bullying. Timely? When has bullying not been a topic for children? Bullying has been going on for at least 30 years. If it's now considered a timely topic, then it should be timely for both children and parents.

Another timely topic ... biographies. Maybe, but I think it depends on who the biography focuses on.

Next, we have Civil War anniversary books. Perhaps for older children, but I think it's more for adults, really. The  Lincoln movie was fabulous, I thought.

Nonfiction survival stories? Possibly. They're probably exciting and tense reads.

The article said to watch for more strong girl protagonists. I like this idea. Girls could use more positive role  models.

Novels in cartoon form...well, those have been popular for at least two decades.

And lastly on the list, sci-fi. Well, duh, that's been big since the onslaught of Star Trek!

What "new" trend do you see in books for children (or adults)?


  1. Yikes. Sometimes I wonder if these trend setters ever talk with the kids themselves or the teachers & librarians who work with them. My students love adventure stories best at the moment - although the genre of the adventure varies depending on the kid. And biographies are rarely popular - although I always have a few kids who enjoy them (usually of favourite athletes or singers)

  2. Hmm...their "timely" list seems to have a few staples and a few misses. Nothing particularly new or timely about them. As Jemi asked, do they ever talk to the kids?

  3. Writing trends are more like publishing trends. I just write what I want to and hope it fits in :-D

  4. Not very keen on the vampire, Zombie trend for children.

  5. Civil War books? They should read them, but will kids want to read them?

  6. Nice to see science fiction made the list.

  7. The "trends" have certainly changed since I was a kid. Fantasy seems popular. We had fantasy books back when I was young, but nothing like what's published these days.

  8. So many schools are emphasizing antibullying that I think it will help sales of those books. Great promo to get a school to use it as a recommended read.

  9. Hello Helen :D just stumbled across your blog, I think it's great…very interesting! :D I'm not sure about trends for young childrens books…but I've noticed that strong female protagonists are appearing more often in YA fiction, and in womens fiction I've read lately there seems to be a theme of girl power. :D I've been advised by my cw tutor not to follow trends, as the publishing process takes so long and trends can change often. He always tells me that uniqueness is more likely to attract attention from publishers. I'm very new to writing though so I don't know how right he is? Love your blog anyway will be sure to check back often. :D

    1. It strikes me, Chazalou, that when a book has a strong female character, it's a theme. But when a book has a strong male character, it's not thought to be new or different, just expected. Your cw tutor is right -- you have to have something unique, whether it's the plot, setting, characters, time period, etc. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  10. The more I hear about publishers, the more I believe they are in a world of their own. Perhaps if they come down and talk to us mere mortals, they might find out what really is trending.


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