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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > December 2017 > What’s been hot – or not…

What’s been hot – or not…

Margaret James looks at this year’s commercial publishing trends – and further ahead, to see what editors will be looking for in 2018

What kinds of fiction did people most enjoy reading in 2017? As writers, we probably need to ask ourselves what especially appealed to readers this year, and then to try to work out why.

When life gets tough, and when the real world is full of carnage, catastrophe and chaos, do readers of commercial fiction turn for entertainment to in-yourface violence: to guts and gore? Or do they perhaps need comfort and escapism: cupcakes and chocolate in literary form? A quick look at the bestseller lists for 2017 reveals that psychological thrillers by authors such as Angela Marsons, Robert Bryndza and Sue Fortin have done very well, as have happy stories featuring teashops, cafés and beach resorts by Jenny Oliver, Georgia Hill and Sue Watson.

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Free your mind! In the new issue of Writing Magazine we look at finding new ways to expand your creative horizons. We also take a look at editing, and offer a practical plan to take your work from messy manuscript to a clean draft that will impress editors. In our star interview, Joanne Harris talks about folklore, fairy tales and sprinkling magic into your fiction. Plus inspiring ideas, practical exercises, success stories, writing prizes to win and much, much more!

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