Today a friend of mine was told that readers no longer read the types of novels they read a few years ago. Tastes have changed and novelists need to change their writing styles to get with the program.
I’m confused. I would consider myself a typical reader. The favorite authors I read a few years ago are still my favorite authors. Do I, as a reader, need to get with the program?
Have I missed a sea change?
I have found that my novels are still selling. Above is one I recently priced for sale at .99 and it is the first in a series (ignore what Amazon says about where it fits in the series. I’ll have to fix that.) You really can’t beat the price, and if you’ve never read my work before, it’s a pretty painless way to find out if you would like my novels.
I realize that tastes change over time, but there are also things that stay the same–I like suspense, romance, conflict, and humor. I like specific settings. If I’ve read and enjoyed a novel in the past, I will look for the writer again and again. I’ll sign up to receive announcements about when her next book is coming out. Those things don’t change.
As a novelist, I try to write what I know my readers want to read, but it’s also what I want to write. At this stage in the game, I’m not changing my writing voice and I don’t think my readers would appreciate it if I did. I’ll be changing settings soon, but I think readers will fall in love with my new home as I have.
I depend on novelists such as Vicki Hinze, Angela Hunt, James Scott Bell, Randy Ingermanson, Kristin Billerbeck, to continue writing in the style I’ve grown to trust. Oh, sure, Jim can write anything from an historical series to a zombie series, but I know what to expect in his pacing, his sense of humor, his writing style. I know his voice and I love his setting, which is typically in the area of Los Angeles, where I spent my early childhood.
I can always count on Angela Hunt for a special depth of insight, no matter where her books are set, whether in Bible times or contemporary, or anywhere in between. I know her voice and I will follow her.
Kristin Billerbeck has a style that will always make me smile and relax and keep reading. I never miss any of her books.
So tell me, whose novels do you love to read after all these years? (I’m not reaching for compliments here, I’m asking about your interest in other authors.) Whose styles are timeless? What kinds of novels are you looking for? We novelists would really love to know.