Terrific OCW conference. Absolutely wonderful. But I learned one very important thing: that I’m smart enough to know, I don’t know a thing!
Why is that?
I met with some wonderful writers, isn’t that the most wonderful thing at a conference? But I also had some terrific conversations with other agents and editors who were delightful about responding to all my questions.
My first questions to all of them was: “What are you looking for? What do you see as the trend right now in fiction?”
And do you know what I was told? No one has a clue. All the editors and agents had favorites they liked to rep, but did they have a notion where the industry was headed? The normal response? “I don’t have a clue. Maybe an inkling here and there, but no real concrete idea where ANYthing is going at the moment.”
Now, at first I took that as very negative, but after mulling over it a few days, I came to the realization that it’s a good thing. If editors are clueless, then they are more likely to look at something ‘outside’ the box, different than their usual, and might be open to new trends.
I admit, I am the glass half full, but I left the conference feeling very optimistic, in spite of all the nay-saying going on. I realized that I might be able to approach an editor with a new, out of the box or edgy idea and get a good reaction. We might both benefit from my chutzpah at daring to think outside traditional lines.
Do I think fiction is tanking in inspirational books? Not on your life. We know romance is kicking like a mule, right where you want the kick, and saying that, I think there will be plenty of kicks for other fiction as well.
Let’s not give up; the glass IS half full!