RANT: Same book, eight different covers . . .

This is a warning to all you nice people, this isn’t a nice post, and it’s not meant to be.

I have a bone to pick!

The conversation came up with another friend of mine I met at a small conference last year. (By small I mean like 20 people small) We began discussing the book market and how it seems like we’re given 8 different takes on the same thing, like vampires for instance.

House of Night
Vampire Diaries
Southern Vampire Mysteries
Anita Blake Vampire Hunter (although that began before Twilight so really, no harm)
Vampire Academy

Wolves of Mercy Falls
Darkest Powers
The Mortal Instruments

Wondrous Strange
Iron Fey
Wicked Lovely
Faery Rebels
Faerily Imperfect

And then there’s a whole hoard of Dystopian, Steampunk, Ghosts, and Witches books coming out, like the Castor Chronicles.

It’s enough to make a girl’s head spin, all of these series that are all based on the same story lines with slightly different takes. It’s basically trend publishing, take one idea and a handful of authors who all write about it and put all their books out there at the same time and see who’s series picks up more readers.

Fish Tank – Check, Goldfish – Check, Japanese Fighting Fish – Check, Carnage – Guaranteed!

Frankly, it’s why I try my best to write about things that are slightly off the beaten path. I like to find obscure mythology and scarce references to things and write about that stuff. I mean we really don’t need another series about the Faerie Courts, or Salem Witch Trials, or Vegetarian Vampires. We need new stories about lore that’s never been explored before.

One series I do want to look into is the Horsemen of the Apocalypse series by Jackie Kessler. The first book is called Hunger, and it’s not one of those books that is competing with all the other genre specific books out there.

Also, no disrespect to the authors of said series above, some of the ones I’ve mentioned are ones I’ve absolutely loved, but I get tired of going to the YA section looking for something different and finding the same story told eight different ways. It almost seems coincidental until you realize that every author worked with a literary agent, an editor and a publishing house who made each and every one of them do revisions until they were satisfied. And somehow, it’s not necessarily the coincidence on the authors part, but on the editors part for making the story lines so similar.

I guess my point is that at some point authors need to find their niche. They can’t just say “Vampires are hot, I’m gonna write my version of a good vampire book.”

And the only reason I’m pointing it out is because after reading The Hunger Games and Delirium, I was inspired to write Dystopian. Except none of my ideas are Dystopian and after about a week of concocting something that would make everyone’s stomach turn, I went back to my series “The Doll” because when it comes down to it, I have to live with my characters for much longer than the reader does, I want to make sure I can stomach it.

Believe me, stomaching The Watcher and The Flame was not easy at times, but that story has been in my head for almost 8 years now, so putting it on paper is cathartic for me.

Everything else I write or plan to write in the future, has to amuse me, and frankly, most of the time it’s not going to read like anything else that’s on the shelf.

Like Brenna Yovanoff’s The Replacement . . . that story was a breath of fresh air!

What do you think?


**End Rant**

Comments ( 5 )

  • Betty: Reflections with Coffee says:

    Yes!!! Good point … some copycats, but they don't realize they're copying. The story is somewhere in the wrinkles of their brains.

  • Jessi E. (The Elliott Review) says:

    I don't think that these books are all duplicates of each other. They each have a slightly (or drastically, in some cases) different take on common creatures/worlds, but they are definitely unique. I mean… there is NOTHING new under the sun, so there will be SOME overlap. That's what makes voice and focus so essential in making something interesting to read.

  • Kristi says:

    I loved The Replacement and even have a quote on my GR page from &#39;The Morrigan&#39; that I&#39;m going to transfer over to my new blog. I thought that book was brilliantly dark and a breath of fresh air.<br /><br />There are books out there that do start to bother me and I wonder if the author cares about their readers any more of if it&#39;s more about the almighty booksales.<br /><br />

  • RhiannonPaille says:

    Hey,<br /><br />Okay I need to point at the fact that this post was a RANT, and secondly, that I did mention no disrespect to the authors. <br /><br />The content of the book isn&#39;t what&#39;s being called into question, it&#39;s the PREMISE. We only get a few lines of text to know what each of these books are about, and ALL of them will say something like, &quot;Teenager meets Vampires&quot;

  • RhiannonPaille says:

    Oh and Jessi, there ARE things under the sun that are brand new that have never been delved into, but things like that are risky because people aren&#39;t familiar with them. :)

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