It’s harder than ever out there for us indie authors. Readers tastes change faster than Fox can cancel a sci-fi show. (Yeah, I’m still bitter about Almost Human) I’m still scratching my head over how the stepbrother romance trend blew up. Biker romance I get. Someone marathoned the entire Sons of Anarchy series during a long weekend and got inspired.
It doesn’t matter if I get it or not though. They tapped into something readers wanted. More power and money to them. That said, you will not see a hot new stepbrother billionaire biker romance from me any time soon. Earlier this year I attempted trend chasing with a superhero themed novella. That was an expensive mistake, but it reminded me of something I never should’ve forgotten. Live your truth.
I’ve never a trendsetter or follower. As a Black girl growing up in an affluent suburb in a single parent home, I couldn’t keep up with the Scotts, Catzvas, Iwatanis, or Singhs. My neighborhood might have looked like a Benetton ad, but my mama said “hell no” to Benetton prices. In high school, Seventeen, Cosmo and Glamour had no hair and makeup tips that would translate to my coarse hair and brown skin. This was back in ancient times before the internet and Carol’s Daughter products so I had to figure things out by trial and error. Little by little I discovered a style that worked.
The same goes for writing. I tried writing something for the masses, but my heart wasn’t in it and it showed. So even though urban fantasy and paranormal romance featuring vampires, angels and demons might not be at the top of the charts anymore, I had to return to my first loves. The process of writing a novel is too long and stressful to do without passion. Writing in the world of the Awakening series is like finding an old pair of perfectly worn blue jeans that still fit and make your ass look banging. I’m gonna ride with these characters til the wheels fall off.
When I see a boatload of writers finding success writing stepbrother biker club werewolf menage, I might be a little jealous, but I’m not hatin’. One of a writer’s greatest pleasures is to find an audience. These people have found their readers and one day I’ll find mine.