Pub Rants

2012 Bologna Children’s Book Fair – Next Hot Thing?

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STATUS: Meetings every half hour and running on 6 hours of sleep a night on average. Yep, that’s Bologna!

What’s playing on the XM or iPod right now? I PUT A SPELL ON YOU by Bryan Ferry

Three days at Bologna and here’s what I can tell you.

On the plane over, people were talking about the next hot trend being about geeks in young adult fiction. Geeks transforming. Geeks not transforming but still winning the girl or the day. Geeks in love.

Do I think it’s the next hot trend? I haven’t got the faintest idea.

It’s definitely clear that foreign editors are feeling the drain of paranormal romance in YA being hot for so long but even with that, they say it’s still selling well in Germany, UK, and France. Editors don’t seem to be buying a lot of it at the moment though.

Since I’m here with Marie Lu to meet with her very excited foreign publishers (the trilogy has been sold in to 22 territories and counting), we are, of course, asking if dystopian is hot abroad.

The verdict is undecided. HUNGER GAMES fever is definitely sweeping the world but whether that will translate into other dystopian novels also becoming hot has yet to be proven. Well, I’ve got my fingers crossed for June and Day…

Hands down, for middle grade DAIRY OF A WIMPY KID works amazingly in every country but Russia. Guess they like big burly guys instead of wimps?


Some pics!

Anita and I at entrance of the Fair.

Me with Sara’s amazing client Stefan Bachmann and the brand spanking new cover for his wonderful middle grade gothic steam punk: The Peculiar

Marie Lu and her Taiwan Publisher Sharp Point! Marie was a rock star. She did the whole meeting in Chinese. (Marie is second person from right.)

Marie and I in the Penguin Bologna Stand.

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15 Responses

  1. Jeannie said:

    Masculine/feminine stereotyping is alive and well in a country where women still aren’t allowed to work in over four hundred professions, including that of bus driver and train operator.

    Why Can’t Russian Women Drive Buses?

    Which may not actually be connected with the lack of success for “Wimpy Kid,” but in a country that admires masculine strength and virility (Check out the pics of Vladimir Putin on some of his sporting expeditions.) I’d be surprised if it were any other way.

  2. Natalie Aguirre said:

    Thanks for sharing about Bologna. I’m a huge fan of Marie’s and interviewed her and gave away a copy of Legend on my blog. It was one of my most popular interviews. And she agreed to another interview when Legend 2 comes out.

  3. ryan field said:

    I’ve been reading a lot of YA lately and one thing I love to see is when there’s a huge emotional obstacle the mc must overcome…a fear, an insecurity. I’m not sure about geeks…but I love when the mc is popular on the outside and no one knows how insecure he/she is on the inside.

  4. Bonnee Crawford said:

    Thanks for sharing this post! I don’t think I have the right mindset for writing geek. I love writing fantasy, supernatural and paranormal but I haven’t really tried it in romance in YA. Hmmmmm…..

  5. Amy said:

    Great Post!

    It’s true about paranormal being popular in the UK – at my local library yesterday, and in the teen section, out of 30 books about 27 were paranormal. I kid you not.

  6. Liz Heinecke said:

    Love transformed geeks (a.k.a. Meg from A Wrinkle in Time) and my main character is a microbiology-loving geek girl who will fit right in to the trend! You’ve just given me motivation to dive back into my MG novel and keep revising!

  7. Cholisose said:

    Looks like a great book fair! And interesting to hear the possibilities of the “next big thing.” I suppose you can never be too sure what it will be.