When I was at the Breathless Reads tour stop, there was a question about YA trends and how the authors responded to them, and it made me think about how readers respond to trends. I remember how a few years ago, it was mostly about the paranormal romances (vampires and angels and the like), but then this little genre called dystopian started leaking in and completely blew up to what it is today. I remember a lot of the books I read last year and the ones I was excited for but didn't get the chance to read were dystopians or at least post-apocalyptic. Because of this new addition to the YA genre, simple paranormal romances that take place in the current time period have been pushed into the background. And while I love dystopians, I can't help but miss my paranormal urban-fantasy romances.
I myself wrote a book that took place in our current world, but when I sent out query letters, I only got negative responses or no responses at all. I'm not sure if it's because it didn't sound as interesting as the ones coming out this year or next year, but obviously it didn't grab anyone's attention. And that's when I realized that I needed to completely rework the story into, not a dystopian world, but a fantasy world, which is another trend making its way into the YA world. But I didn't change it because it was a trend. The original first book was only set up in the real world to sort of put it into context for teens, but I realized that no matter what sort of world you're in, everyone has the same problems. And I was going to take my story to a place in Iceland in the beginning of the second book anyway. I came to realize that I was actually changing the setting of my book not because of the trends in YA, but because it made a lot more sense with what I was trying to do with it. I was originally trying to make it into something it wasn't, and now I know I have it in the right place.
The other trend that seems to be dying out, but was very bothersome only less than a year ago, was that, in the second book in the series, the guy was annoyingly absent. Even if there was no love triangle, I still hated falling in love with the guy in the first book, and then barely getting to see him in the second one. Luckily, that so far has been absent of recent sequels, but I find that this particular trend is the one that bothers me the most. I feel like it does nothing for the story except make me hate it. Luckily, I'm making sure this does not happen in my own series.
What trends in YA do you love? Which ones do you hate? Let me know in the comments!