Urban Fantasy Readers: What do you want more of?

20

January 4, 2014 by Kira Lyn Blue

Every so often I hear comments about how my favorite genre is dying out. Readers are tired of vampires/shifters/angels/demons/witches/etc. Writers mention that they can’t even get agents to even look at their manuscripts because of the basic premise.

moarNo, it can’t be true!

As someone with delusions of someday publishing in the genre, that makes my poor little heart go cold. As an avid reader of the genre, it gives me the shakes just considering I might lose the steady stream of books fueling my addiction.

Then reality kicks in and reminds me that there is absolutely no shortage of mysteries and thrillers for all the rabid fans of those genres. Reading mysteries might not be the trendy thing to do right now, but loyal fans will always be looking for more to read.

Where my Urban Fantasy Fans At? I know you’re out there!

I firmly believe the same will hold true for Urban Fantasy, and that with self-publishing we readers (and writers) will not be as much at the mercy of publishing houses who turn down good books just because they’re not in the biggest trending genre of the moment.

This is a good thing for all of us.

Calling All Loyal Genre Fans!

Dear readers, this is your chance to tell us, the writers, what you DO want more of. We know you’re out there and that you don’t care about the trends, you just want more of the genre you love.

Want more supernatural sleuths? Don’t leave it a mystery, share with the crowd!

Aching to continue your mad love affair with vampire or shifter romances?Ā 

Need more magic in your life? And do you prefer mages or witches?

Dying for most ghosts?

Would you sell your soul for more epic demon slayers?

Whether it’s angels, Fae, Voodoo queens, necromancers, magical assassins, or paranormal protectors, give us a shout out in the comments section and let us know that you’re loud, you’re proud, and you want MORE!

I ā¤ Atticus!

I’ll even start it off: I want more Druids! The only authors I can even think of that cover them at all are Kevin Hearne and Karen Marie Moning.

 

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20 thoughts on “Urban Fantasy Readers: What do you want more of?

  1. Dave Higgins says:

    Vampires.

    I read almost anything with vampires, although I have so far avoided reading the back of vampire breakfast cereals.

    • Me too! Although I am a little burnt on series where vampires are little more than people with fangs and dietary restrictions. I’d like to see more stories where they are more “Other.”

      • Dave Higgins says:

        I have finally finished the first draft of my vampire novel, which was at least partially an attempt to write a vampire hero who wasn’t a troubled-superhero-who-gives-good-cuddles. How successful I was will be revealed when I take it out of the e-drawer in February to start rewrites.

      • Awesome! I’ll keep an eye on your blog for updates šŸ™‚

  2. MishaBurnett says:

    A sense of wonder.

    What I love about speculative fiction is the chance to enter an entirely new world that is filled with strange and unusual things and the idea that anything could be around the next corner.

    Unfortunately, a lot of Urban Fantasy tends to be derivative. You have a gang of Vampires, who are decadent aristocrats, and you have a gang of Werewolves, who are crude eco-mystics, and the Vampires and the Werewolves hate each other.

    You’ve got Fey, who are proud and cruel and egotistical, and divided into Light and Dark so the Light Fey and the Dark Fey can hate each other.

    Everyone is amazingly beautiful and they all feel superior to humans, although some are predatory and some are protective.

    Then you’ve got your heroine who is some kind of special ultra-powerful thing, only she grew up not knowing that, and she has to get everyone to play nice together and stop this century old war that threatens to… blah, blah blah.

    Which is not to condemn the entire genre–I just got the new Matt Archer: Monster Hunter novel from Kendra Highley, and it is fresh and exciting, set in a unique world that the characters are still exploring. Jane Thomson’s “Deeper” is a retelling of “The Little Mermaid”, but she has re-imagined mermaids as an entirely new species, very different from any other version out there. China Meilville’s “New Crobuzon” novels introduced an extraordinary cosmos of wonders.

    I don’t ask for much, just a brand new world that I have never seen before.

    • I’ll confess that I don’t mind reading multiple books set in exactly the same type of world you just described. However, I do admit that those books do lack the sense of wonder and excitement of having an entirely new world opened to you. I still clearly remember my first Urban Fantasy series and the utter enthrallment of discovering vampires and shifters and kick-ass heroines. It was amazing. And unfortunately, no other vampire book no matter how well done will ever top that experience.

  3. Squirrels, of course. šŸ™‚

  4. Erica Dakin says:

    Heh, with apologies to the first poster, I want anything BUT vampires. How about elves? I have this thing for elves, if you hadn’t noticed…

  5. I wouldn’t worry too much. I’ve heard about the refusal of agents and publishers to look at Urban Fantasy for years. It’s because of the current popularity and a flood of low quality submissions. People see a trend and think they can make easy money off it because the trendsetters are built as a ‘rags to riches’ story. In this case you look at how a Mormon housewife had a dream and built an empire on sparkly vampires. Sadly, people are sheep and will try to imitate instead of being unique. This blocks off serious authors until their interest moves on to another genre. A lot of this occurs when blockbuster movies are connected to a series too.

    There will always be a few that get through the gates and eventually more new faces will be needed to keep the genre going. Just takes patience.

    • That’s true. I’ve also heard similar speculations made regarding self-publishing in general. Readers are wary of self-pubbed books for just what you mentioned- a flood of low quality publications hitting the market. My hope as a reader is to ride out the wave until the sheep move on and it’s easier to find the serious authors. As a wannabe author, I’m holding out until I feel confident the story I’m working on isn’t just another low-quality submission.

      • Self-published will always have that stigma because there will always be those that try the ‘Flood’ maneuver. Churn out a ton of cheap books with catchy titles and pretty covers. Though, it’s getting harder for people to do that because people are catching on. The Amazon Sample is a big help in avoiding these.

  6. MrsJoseph says:

    I want different. I get carbon copies all the time and I want different. I loved Shadow Blade and plan to get the rest of the series. I also loved the Monster Hunter series.

    I want to read something that explores new cultures and breaks away from the same thing we get all the time

    • Are you talking fictional cultures or less explored cultural mythologies?

      • MrsJoseph says:

        Both. But if creating a fictional culture, base it off of something other than European or Asian. We get a lot of European culture and a lot of Asian mash ups but not much else. I have a friend who’s Samoan and he told me that he’s never read a fantasy based on Samoan culture and the only Samoan character he’s read was a minor character in Kate Daniels.

      • I do think most of what I have read is based off European culture. I do like that the Kate Daniels books tend to hit a wide variety of mythologies, but I can’t remember anything Samoan. Now it’s going to drive me insane until I go back and find that character.

      • MrsJoseph says:

        He is in Magic Bleeds – at least he gets some real page time in Magic Bleeds. He’s pretty badass but not much more than a toss away character.

        But that’s what I mean. I had a discussion in one of my book clubs recently about culture and sexism. A lot of the men kept protesting that sexism must be included in low tech fantasy because it was “historically realistic.” Even when I pointed out several cultures in which women had no restrictions they went back to historically realistic.

        hhumphf!

        New/other cultures holds a wealth of new opportunities for both readers and authors.

      • Oh, I so wish I’d been there for that debate! I’ve got some fantastic arguments for both sides. Maybe I’ll make that a blog post…

      • MrsJoseph says:

        Do it! Love to read it.

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