Don’t follow the trends, set them.


Historical fiction? Tut tut … why aren’t you writing about sexually oppressed vampires?

The other day somebody asked me what genre I’m writing. The conversation went something like this …

Me:  Ancient Egyptian historical fiction.

Fellow writer: Historical Fiction? … Oh, that will cut down your audience. Are there vampires in it? Vampires are popular right now.

Me: Uh, no, my Ancient Egyptian Historical Fiction doesn’t have vampires in it.

Fellow Writer: You should probably rewrite it to include vampires, or if not vampires at least some Time Travel. Time Travel sells well with Historical Fiction.

Me: Yes, I think vampires and time travel will definitely add some unexpected twists to the plot.

Fellow Writer: You should also look at government conspiracies and cover ups. Downtrodden masses rebelling against powerful governments are the in thing …


Yup, looks like I’ve been approaching this all wrong. There’s no vampires, no space aliens, no time travel, no plane crashes on weird islands where sentient  black smoke randomly attacks people for no apparent reason, no reality TV game shows where my characters are hunted down by three eyed super mutants wielding ZX745 plasma riffles …

What I need to do is check out what’s ‘like really popular right now’ and then join the flock of people writing slightly different versions of the same thing.

Sure, I may have powerful, deep characters, a twisting plot, war, love, revenge, jealousy, even a little religious controversy that would likely get the pope’s pretiosa in a twist, but I forgot the sexually oppressed vampires. Dang! Looks like there’s another rewrite coming!



Comments (26)

  1. you should probably rerite it to include vampires!! okay I admit it i laughed

  2. StephanieCole

    haha sarcastic much???

  3. Tom

    I think you’ve discovered the real secret. Wasn’t the Pope a little put out by Harry Potter? Then of course there’s The da Vinci Code.

    It seems to me the number of book sales is directly proportional to how much you piss off Papa Razi

  4. Ditch the vampires. Go for gate & time travel. Put ugly little worms in the gods of your book and have them reach earth through shimmery big blue wormholes. Add a few spaceships and a modern-day United States army and… wham! *grins* Forgive me. It was too tempting not to shake 🙂

  5. Elise Fallson

    Hilarious. Ancient Egyptian sexually oppressed vampires! I think you’re on to something. (;

  6. I’m a bit perplexed you didn’t realise the market needed another vampire/space alien/time travel/religious conspiracy story before you sat down to write in the first place! x

  7. Don’t forget the love triangle! It won’t sell if you don’t have a love triangle. 😉

    • Dave

      cheers, loving ur blog btw

    • Posted on incredible, that was a very good read. In cosolunicn, someone who actually thinks and understands what they are blogging about. Quite difficult to find of late, especially on the web . I bookmarked your web blog and will make sure to keep coming back here if this is how you always write. thank you, keep it up! .

  8. Giggles. I think you’ll enjoy Steinbeck’s summary of his publishers’ view of “The Reader” from @LettersOfNote. Here’s the link:


  9. Lol and you could even add a couple of sexually repressed lesbian vampires like Sheridan le Fanu’s…

  10. writingdad

    lol this is one of the few writers blogs that doesn’t just make me nod the head while thinking of my own similiar experiences but makes me laugh too. You can really write dude keep it up!

  11. That’s hilarious for so many reasons, but I have to point out that this person cannot seriously believe they are a writer if that’s the way they think. Maybe they were pulling your leg. One of the great things about historical fiction is that it is based on reality, and reality is weird enough without adding in time-travelling, non-existent creatures from other planets etc. Still, you’re obviously doomed to failure as you ommited to include zombies. 🙂

  12. Stick to your guns, er, papyrus. Put hieroglyphics and some pleated linen skirts on the cover art and I”ll fork out the price of a paperback. There isn’t enough historical fiction set in ancient Egypt. Of course you need to throw in a power struggle settled by the ancient Egyptian version of The Hunger Games …

  13. An insightful post there mate ! Thank you for that .

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