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Young Adult Predictions for 2013

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I thought I’d ring in 2013 with a few predictions about what to look for in the YA market in the coming year.  No crystal ball here, just some guesses based on my own experience and observations.

1)  Lots and lots of sci-fi, with a dash of high fantasy thrown in.  Much in the way that the market was glutted with dystopias in 2012, I think we’ll see a swelling number of sci-fi in 2013.  Look for lots of aliens, spaceships, and futuristic worlds.  Also, look for plenty of high-fantasy books featuring kick-ass female protagonists.  Dragons, kingdoms, prophecies, etc.

2) The rise of the thriller.  Several  will come out with big market push–suspense, horror, and techno-thrillers.  Not a glut, but definitely a rising trend.

3) The return of the paranormal romance.  The bubble has long burst.  What once seemed old and overdone will start seeming fresh again, and I’m predicting a new wave of faeries, demons, vampires, and witches, along with brand new breeds of paranormal beings.

4)  The eventual demise of the dystopia–although I could be wrong.  The Hunger Games movie series could actually work to draw out the dystopia much in the same way that the Twilight movies kept the paranormal romance alive.  I do think there will probably be a shift toward a dystopia/sci-fi hybrid, though. Think Logan’s Run.

5) The continuance of the realistic fiction mainstay.  Contemporary, realistic fiction of all kinds (‘issue’ books, romances, modern-day retellings of classic stories) will continue to hold strong.  Look for lots more books with male protagonists.

6) The YA market expanding to include “New Adult” (or “NA”) to allow for sexier, spicier reads along lines of 50 Shades.  Trust me on this–it’s already happening.  I’m expecting several popular YA authors to grow into NA.

I think that about covers it!   What are your predictions for the YA market in 2013?  Will you be writing toward these projected trends, or bucking them to write the story you want to write?

Kristi’s YA debut, HAVEN, was released by Simon Pulse in Feb. 2011. She also writes adult fiction (historical romance) as Kristina Cook and Kristi Astor. Visit her online at www.kristi-cook.com.
  1. Gosh, I hope you are wrong. Just my opinion, but I will celebrate when sci-fi, pseudo-romance, highly-sexed teens, wizards and vampires all depart from the literary world. It is really dumbing-down young adults and hypnotizing them against the richness of real life.

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