Monday, April 19, 2010

Nocturnal Animals, Hubby Watches New Moon, and I Need YOUR Help

1. So KidA (my 3 year old who just turned 4) said to me the other day: "Mom, I wish we were nocturnal." And ever since then, he's been determined to make this happen. His brilliant plan: "I'm gunna sleep all morning, so then I can stay up all night. And then I can use my eye-shine to see other animals in the dark."

So far he's holding true on the trying to stay up all night part. Don't know how many times I'll have to tell him to go to sleep tonight. The only problem is, the kid still gets up at 6:30 and wakes me up to feed him breakfast. I. Am. Not. A. Fan. Of. This.

2. After months of refusing to be in the same room as me and Taylor Lautner (after the incident in which he caught me grinning like a school girl while watching Taycob on SNL) Hubby finally agreed to watch NEW MOON with me. (And when I say agreed, I mean that he's the one who actually suggested that we rent the movie.) Anyway, hubs and I snuggled up on the couch for a night of Twilightly fun (and I managed to keep my drooling to a minimum) and the best part of the evening was listening to hubby's many observations about the movie.

Here are a few of my favorite:

A) Okay, seriously, how did they get that kid so buff? Cuz I want whatever they gave him.

B) How come the other werewolves don't have rock hard abs, too? Isn't supposed to be part of the whole werewolf package?

C) Tell me again why does Bella likes Edward?

D) Whoa, they actually made that wolf look pensive.

E) Okay, so I kind of get why you have a crush on that Jacob guy.

F) Eew. Does Edward have a third nipple?

G) What was with Bella and Edward wearing those 1920s clothes while running through the forest?

H) So I'm pretty sure the wolf was the best actor in that movie.

Needless to say, it was a very entertaining evening.


3. Calling all Book Bloggers, Authors, Industry Professionals, and Readers: I need your help, peeps!

I'm teaching a class this Friday about paranormal fiction, and I'd love to get a wide range of opinions and input from all of you to put into my speech. I have a series of questions for y'all, and I'm kind of hoping to spark a bit of debate.

In exchange for your help, I'm having a contest.
For each of the questions you answer below, you'll get an entry into a drawing for a $25 Amazon gift certificate (or to your favorite book retailer). And, as always, promoting the contest will get you more entries to the contest.

Here are the questions:

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

I need to put my class together, so this contest is a short one. You have until Wednesday, April 21st at Noon MST to get your answers in.

Can't wait to read what y'all have to say!

53 comments:

Michelle said...

He he he, Bricky...

Wish I could have been there to hear all of his hilarious New Moon comments first hand.

jessjordan said...

Love the hubby's reactions to New Moon! LOL at C, and ewwww to F!

(p.s. It's too late for me to answer questions with any coherency. I'll try to stop by tomorrow!)

Taschima Cullen said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urban_fantasy

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paranormal_romance

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

The title says it all. It's YA, which means that it will probably talk about things that teens could in some sort of way relate to. It's Paranormal, which means that whle teens can relate to it it isn't too real and is more easy going and fun. Romance? Well, I don't think I have to cover this do I?

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Vampires are going to continue being big. I just love the suckers. They are just everything a girl hopes to have at least once. Another thing that may be getting big is crazy people (Bleeding Violet, loved the book), Angels (Hush, Hush), and zombies (Beautiful Dead).

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

LOL Vampires hahahahaha It's been done over, and over, and over...

And over again.

A chiche I would tell authors to avoid? Glimmering vampire bodies.


E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

As long as the author keeps it fresh I will read it. And as I always say, it depends on characters, plot, and voice. Oh and a kick ass cover!

Erica said...

Here's my answers to the questions :)

B. I think YA Paranormal romance is so popular because it's not real, and it allows you to step outside your world and been in a world with the magnificent creatures.

C. I think Angels are one of the "hot" things in YA.

D. I'm my opinion nothing is really "overdone" unless its the same as everything done prior. I think taking a popular thing and putting your own twist on it to make you unique is awesome, and at the same time writing about the less popular things is absolutely fantastic as well.

E. My favorite YA paranormal romances stand out from the pack is that "thing" that makes them unique. For example, The Evernight series is vampires but its a new stand point, and the main character has one foot in the vampire world and one in the real world.

Jackson Porter said...

It's Jackson here, I'm not too big in the author world yet but my first book wlil be coming out in July. You can see more about it at www.jacksonporter.blogspot.com

Yeah, I don't get that, why does? Bella like Edward? If I was a girl I would go with Jacob. Edward is stale and boring.

Anyway, for the contest.
1) Paranormal Romance is a book where two people, usually male and female, fall in love and end up Happily Ever After. But, referring to "paranormal," would mean that one of the beings has "super powers," also referred to as "abilities." Such as vampire, werewolf, ghost, talking to the dead, those kind of things. And Urban Fantasy subset of fantasy defined by place. Urban fantasies are set in times and/or have "supernatural" elements in them.
So the difference is Paranormal Romance is a book with two beings, male and female, fall in love, one of them has a "supernatural" talent. An Urban Fantasy takes place in a certain time, past, present, or future. Urban fantisies are set in certain times and/or have "supernatural" elements. They are two very different things.
2) I think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular because most readers like to read fantasy. And some readers like a little bit of romance. Twilight was the one that kicked it off I think, a human and a vampire fall in love. After Twilights phenomonal success readers have been looking for more "Twilight." And since there can only be one Twilight readers are looking for more. And they will grab anything they can get their hands on.
3) Definietly vampires and werewolves, again Twilight made Paranormal Romance kick off, and there are vampires and werewolves in them. Most girls like to read romance, in fact, that's usually all htey like to read. If a book doesn't have romance in it it "sucks," or it's "stupid." So books with paranormal romance will kick off, and will be more successful if there are vampires and werewovles in them.
4) The main thing that really bugs me is the, guy meets girl, fall in love, get in fight, break up, guy does something nice, get back together, happily ever after. A writer needs to avoid the basic plot outline. That's what I liked about your book so much, and Twilight, they were never really in a fight. Edward just left as did Daniel. That's what makes a paranormal romance so good!
5) Good cover, big book, and catchy title. I would imagine that would make it stand out. The Dark Divine, after I won that book on JD's blog I told people about it, they said the title was "deep." And some of them wanted to read it. Such as the spectacly known Nightworld, who's not going to forget that title. And the books have catchy titles. Nightworld: Secret Vampire. Nightworld: Spell Binder. Stuff like that. So I say a catchy title and a good cover would make it stand out.

Well, KidA is hilarious. I finally got my friend to watch New Moon, and the whole time every time they swore he said "sinner." And then he said Bella was a whiner when she fell to the ground after Edward left. It was hilarious.

I'll tell people about it on Facebook and Twitter.
And on my blog.
www.jacksonporter.blogspot.com

Until next time Bree,

-Jackson

Sydnee said...

To answer your husband's question: yes. Yes Edward does have a third nipple.

A. Hard question. When I think of paranormal romance, I automatically think of vampires, witchcraft, werewolves... you know, general folklore/mythology type deals. Fantasy, to me anyway, is a much wider scope. Adding the "urban" to it means normal everyday kids/adults in everyday situations dealing with not so normal conditions (super powers, cat next door who can talk, riding a dragon to work, etc.). So, I suppose a paranormal romance could be an urban fantasy at the same time.

B. Some of it I attribute to the bandwagon thing... it's what's prevalent and cool right now. The more successful books there are, the more imitators there'll be. But mostly, it's because everyone loves to fantasize about a world drastically different than what we have now. Real life is boring. Werewolves rock.

C. Vampires, werewolves, witchcraft... I think I'm beginning to notice an increase of angels, too, so I think that trend will continue to grow.

D. I don't think trends can every be 'overdone'... but the more popular a trend is, the more new authors will have to work in order to stand out from everyone else. Vampires will be around for a long time still, but I think everyone has had their full of vampires who sparkle. Just try to add your own spin, I guess, but stay true to yourself in the process.

As for cliches... I'm getting tired of the "bad boy who can't be tamed and the good girl who falls in love with him" thing. Why can't good, wholesome guys get a chance to shine? Why can't math geeks get love too? I love Taylor Lautner as much as the next girl (WOOT), but realistically, seventeen year old guys aren't ripped like that, so I don't want to read about a million of them in my books. Sometimes less is more. Give my leading man freckles and a gap-toothed smile. :)

E. Individual style has a lot to do with it. And no idea is original, so if someone takes a popular trend and completely changes it, or even just changes it a little, it really sticks out to me. Make the trends your own, and I'm already liking you. Turn it on its head. Make it beg for mercy. :)

Taffy said...

Loved the hubby's comments!
Good luck on Friday! Maybe I'll pop in on your presentation but I have feeling it will be standing room only.
I'll try and answer your q's but not sure they'll be right!
Paranormal Romance=Romance between human and werewolf or ghost or vampire etc.
Urban Fantasy=set in a city with mystical creatures
I think YA PR is hot right now because the main character(usually the male)protect the female they love but don't want to love. Also, YA PR characters are usually strong, brave and believe in making wrongs right and/or protecting the weak.
I enjoyed reading about other mystical/fantasy creatures/beings like Shadow Hunters.
Werewolves are overdone. (I'm probably saying that because I read three in a row without knowing they were about werewolves.)
I like the different take each author has on mystical/fantasy creatures.
Seems to me fairies are hot now. :)

AliseOnLife said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
I think of paranormal romance as involving vampires/ werewolves, whereas urban fantasy can run the gamut of supernatural or mythological creatures. But, as it is named, I also see urban fantasy as taking place in a city or even having characters that are street-smart a la Melissa Marr, or Cassandra Clare.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
For me, it boils down to two words: world building. So many books that are coming out in YA, that have paranormal elements, involve such an immersion into the novel's world. Readers want something that speaks to them.

C. What trends do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre? and D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?
Obviously vampires and werewolves are always a draw. There does seem to be a surfeit of fallen angels. I think that debut authors get inspiration from what they read (as a writer, I can attest to this), so it's not necessarily a bad thing, as long as the language is sharp, and the characters make me want to care about the story. If an author is writing to capitalize on a 'trend', they are writing for the wrong reason. I write because I can't not write, and because I have a story to tell.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
Again, it's the world building, and the language. I read both YA and adult paranormal romance. I want my YA to evoke the same emotional and intellectual connection as the adult.

vonze said...

LOL, those sound like questions my boyfriend asked when we watched New Moon together. =)

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

To me, Paranormal Romance is a romance between a human and a non-human being or two non-human beings.

Urban Fantasy is the same as Paranormal Romance, except Urban Fantasy takes place in a city. When I think Urban Fantasy, I think the streets of New York and tall buildings. I also think of a more futuristic setting when I think of Urban Fantasy.

Examples:
Vampire and girl fall in love in a small town = paranormal romance
Vampire and girl fall in love in London 2050 = urban fantasy

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

Every girl wants an extraordinary, special guy to fall in love with her. Well, what’s more extraordinary than a guy who has paranormal powers? It makes the romance seem much more once-in-a-lifetime and also more complicated.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Many people said angels, and I agree.

Dunno if anyone else had this problem, but my mother flipped out when I first started reading vampire novels. Angels, on the other hand, are pretty harmless to non-paranormal-liking parents who buy the books.

I think we’ll see more writers creating their own paranormal creatures as well.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

It seems like it’s always the girl who wants to be turned into a non-human being. Why not the guy? Or why not deal with their relationship staying strictly human and non-human, with no turning involved?

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

Well thought out and explained rules for the non-humans powers and/or condition. The romance has got to develop and grow stronger over time. I don’t like when characters are too suddenly in love. It takes a lot to trust someone you’ve just met, especially if they’re not human, lol.

Lenore said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

When I think of paranormal romance, I think of a human having a romance with a paranormal creature (vampire, werewolf, etc) though I guess it could also be two paranormal creatures. Urban fantasy is much wider in scope and can include paranormal romance but doesn't have to. I differenciate urban fantasy with high fantasy in that urban fantasy takes place on Earth, just with fantasy elements while high fantasy takes place somewhere other than Earth or in a made-up kingdom on an Earth-like planet.


B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

Probably because teens have always been attracted to the unattainable, and paranormal guys are the ultimate in unattainability.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Looks like people are getting tired of vampires, fairies and werewolves, so we have angels, mermaids, banshees, greek gods, and less known paranormal creatures emerging. I do not want to see a human girl romancing a sea monster.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

I don't read a lot of paranormal romance, but I'd have to say anything that copies Twilight should be avoided.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

I have to believe the romance, and for that, I need to have a sense that the characters either have a history or that you see them building a real connection within the course of the story. I need to be able to understand the characters' motivations, just like in any good novel.

Angela said...

Love those observations about NM!

Stella (Ex Libris) said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

In PNR a couple and their relationship struggles are in the focus of the novel, they usually ahve happy endings.

In UF novels the development, struggles of the protagonist/narrator/main character are the centre of the story, there may be some romantic details or storyline, but usually the novel can leave their relationship (struggles) unresolved or not end in a classic HEA.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

Paranormal elements add some excitement, some out of the ordinary thrill to the story, and they became the new version of the teenage couples struggles: before Shakespeare could have Romeo and Juliet as stracrossed lovers because it was enough hardship for them to have their parents hate each other, nowadays most teenagers parents don't like the boyfriend/girlfriend of their daughter/son. If that said boyfriend/girlfriend is a vampire/werewolf/angel it explains and adds a forbidden element to their love.

Also paranormal creatures are outcasts, they do not bledn in, don't belong to the ordinary, human life, teenagers can relate to this feeling of isolation and loneliness.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Angels! Fallen angels, other "newer"
paranormal creatures: werewolves and vampires have been around for quite some time now, so new heros are discovered. But I think vampires will never lose their appeal.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

It is always the human girl who wants to be transformed or wants the relationship with a reluctant non-human boy.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

An original plot twist (when I read Evernight by Claudia Gray, even though the setting and the basic plot seemed a bit déjá vu, that twist changed everything), a unique narrative voice, great writing, snarky, witty dialogues, a strange take on usual ideas.

Tweeted here: http://twitter.com/Stella_ExLibris/status/12509011898

also spread the word on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000899165880&v=wall&story_fbid=116078831743221

stella.exlibris (at) gmail DOT com

FionaChan said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

I guess, paranormal romance covers more romance with some characters having super powers or something like being a vampire, while urban fantasy focuses on.. fantasy. I think you should check wikipedia lol.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

YA is popular, romance is popular, paranormal is popular, why wouldn't it be? Actually, I don't really mind paranormal but YA + Romance is to die for, paranormal is a nice bonus! Sometimes, teens want whatever's happening in the book to happen to them in real life, most girls are suckers for those, including me :(

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Vampire is already overrated, but nobody could deny the vampire trend now. It will continue to be overrated. In fact, I think it's affecting me and now I like vampires too LOL!

ROBOT ANYONE? ROBOT ROBOT!! lol

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Just don't copy twilight, you know twihards might just kill you! LOL just kidding, I don't know. Maybe think out out out of the box if you're writing vampires!

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

Creative and beautiful book cover + title helps, and please please be funny, I don't want to read a book without anything to laugh at!

Jessica Kennedy said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

Urban Fantasy doesn't necessarily have any romance but it's set in an urban setting and it's clearly understood it's urban and it has elements of fantasy. Paranormal romance is a romance with paranormal elements set at any location.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

It's popular with me because it's an escapism, not normal, and full of all kinds of possibilities. Another words: it's fun. Normal can be so boring. ;)

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Lots of trends: vampires, werewolves, ghosts, witches seem to be the norm.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Vamps & weres will always be over done. I think they are easier to write maybe? I'm not sure about the cliches. I like when authors switch them up though but they need to support their changes.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

When the author can make it fun, new, lots of action, and the romance (if there is one) likable: I want to be the girl in the story kind of likable.

Good luck with your class!

Courtney Barr - The Southern Princess said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
a fantasy that is set within a city

a romance that is accented by paranormal settings, creatures or theme

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

I think that a great many teens love the idea of that out of this world romance. One that cannot be explained but yet is felt with an intensity that comes with being a young adult. I also think that as a young adult we tend to like to skirt the rules more often than not - YA Paranormal Romance allows an escape into a world where the rules are broken with consequences but also with the concept of great happiness in the end.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Right Now: Vampires, Werewolves
Upcoming: Fallen Angels, Zombies, Witches

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Vampires

A chiche I would tell authors to avoid? sparkles.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

An intriguing cover pulls you in first, but the character's voice has to keep me interested.

Good luck with your class - you will do great!!

Kim said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
For me PR is more about the Romance and UF is more about the Fantasy.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
I think Twilight opened the whole genre up to so many. Men and women of all ages, and not just YA. I think the love story being the main focus sucks us in.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?
Vampires and Werewolves and other such creatures are being changed. They aren't the same old thing. Writers are taking creative license to change them up to suit their stories.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?
Not really sure to tell you the truth. This whole genre is still somewhat new to me.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
Being different. Not the same Vamp in love with the same weird teenage girl.

Meaghan said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

I am always wondering that, I think paranormal romance focuses more on the relationships in the story and urban fantasy focuses more on the action side, at least that is what I have noticed.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

I think it is so popular because it is always fun to escape reality for a little while and the supernatural elements in these books make that possible, plus all the teen angst is just like a bonus to the story. I also think that the characters in these stories always seem to be easy to relate to, even though they are in a fantasy world.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

right now- vampires, werewolves
future- angels

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

vampires, I am a teacher but I also work part time in a book store and we have an entire table that is just vampires! It is crazy! I think authors should avoid that subject for the time being.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

I think it is in the development of the characters, are they people you can relate to even if they have some sort of paranormal element to them? Also, don't just jump into the romance part, there has to be some build up to it.

I think it also matters if the supernatural part of the book is intriguing and makes the reader want to learn more about it.

I have also tweeted this out https://twitter.com/abookwormshaven
These are great questions, good luck on your speech!

Emily said...

In exchange for making your husband watch "New Moon," you should watch it again with RiffTrax. Hilarious!

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular? It’s a break from the mundane. Have you stepped inside a high school lately? Not much of a selection. Girls like to believe that there is a super-special-created-just-for-me guy out there that would do anything to make sure that she is happy. Even if it means giving up a part of their identity or putting themselves in constant danger.
C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre? Besides vampires? I think there will be a lot more with angels/fallen angels (i.e. Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick). I think we’ll see a lot more mythological creatures soon though. What about Gods or part Gods? Maybe some Sirens, Mermaids, Centaurs?
D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid? I could write a novel on this. I’m a little tired of the love interest being “dangerous yet oh-so-irresistible.” Note to all teenage girls out there, If a guy tells you different ways he could kill you or to stay away from him, run far away. It’s not “edgy,” it’s just creepy. Also, I’m not a big fan of the “hiding the boyfriend in the room away from the parents.” There is a disturbing lack of parental involvement in paranormal romances. Or relationships with other friends. It seems to be all about the romantic interest. Sometimes the most compelling story is not the romance. It’s a really good friend that is there at all times. Those are the relationships that last. And lastly, what is with these immortal beings going to high school? If I were immortal, that would be the last place on earth I’d want to be.
E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack? Good characters. ‘Nuff said.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

1. Your husband has good taste ;) saying the wolf was the best :) *high five to the hubby*

2. Your q's

I don't know YA is big right now but I love it. Adult books are too heavy.

Future hot trend = angels and my personal fav mermaids

Overdone? = I'm vamped out.

Bree Biesinger Despain said...

Great answers you guys!

Although, I do want to point out that the "good girl meets a bad boy who turns out to be a paranormal creature" isn't a cliche--it's a genre. Called Paranormal Romance. Either the girl or the guy is a paranormal creature. And because they're paranormal, they're probably going to be somewhat dangerous. Although, I do think it would be fun to see more books where the girl is the paranormal/dangerous one. If both characters are normal average humans, then the story wouldn't be a paranormal romance.

I think I may do a whole essay blog post on this and the different sub-genres of romance novels. I've got it brewing in my brain already.

Kate said...

Terrible clothing choice for the 'future' scene!! Even Chris Weitz said he wishes he could take that back, lol.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

I think many people can relate to YA Paranormal Romance in some ways. We have the fantasy aspect (who wouldn't want to have super powers?) and then the romance aspect which anyone over the age of 15 can relate to.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Werewolves/shape shifters, mostly because of Twilight. And the idea of making that 'epic romance'.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Relationships being surface-deep. No one is perfect! Yeah I think you should be attracted to someone physically but I think more emotional connections need to be made so that young adults who read it will look up to those characters who can make meaningful relationships.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

Characters! There have been books in the past that I loved soley for the characters, and I could care less about the plot. I love reading about relationships (romantic or friendship) because I want to relate to a book personally.

Lisa Green said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

Might not be a popular answer, but I'm thinking it has more to do with whether it's YA or not. Paranormal goes with YA like bread goes with butter. :) Both paranormal and urban fantasy are current stories set in the real world with fantastic creatures/elements to them. Its the "romance" in this question that differentiates the two, but the meaning's obvious there!

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

It's the romance. Teens crave it. The Paranormal is secondary and gives (usually the guy) that "perfection"

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

I've heard mermaids, faeries, demons, but who knows really. I truly believe it's more about how it's written.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

I think if you're writing to fit what's in you're in trouble no matter what. Again, anythings okay if its written well because its the story you have to tell.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

Hmm. the characters. If I believe in the characters and feel like they're real then I can follow anything.

Inked Books said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

For some reason, when I think of "Urban" I think of a setting first (gritty, seedy, etc)
Paranormal romance is more "normal guy/girl meets someone out of the ordinary.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

Because it's nice to get out of real life and escape into fantasy, and it's easier for some people to "get" paranormal than straight up "fantasy"

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Vampires (ugh), Angels, Werewolves,

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Vampires. Avoid "new kid in school" scenarios, also the "team x and team y things.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

Unique, good story, doesn't remind me of Twilight.

Travis
spongyman1026@yahoo.com

Iffath♥Ahmed said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=define%3A+paranormal+romance&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&client=firefox-a

http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=lHx&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&ei=yOXNS5XxC5_00gTLjZTgDw&sa=X&oi=spell&resnum=0&ct=result&cd=1&ved=0CAQQBSgA&q=define%3A+urban+fantasy&spell=1

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

Because it's something we young adults can relate and escape to, however the romance is on a whole other level! And paranormal? Added bonus! Or maybe it should be the other way around.. :)

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Vampires (definitely!), Angels, Werewolves/Shapeshifters, Faeries, Demons??!

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

I agree with the people saying 'new kids at school/wherever'

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

It depends, a nice, fresh voice, sparkly (not literally), vibrant characters, unique plot, and a STUNNING cover of course! :)

Good luck! :)

xo Iffath

Christa Holland said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
PR, to me, is usually a series with a different MC for each book, but recurring characters. UF is the same MC (and I usually expect it to be told first person) over a longer series. PR also depends more on the romance (duh?) and for some reason, I usually think of it as being a little more playful in tone over all (but I can't justify why).

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
Cultures go through cycles (duh) and with the economy & all, I think we're in a little bit of a down cycle. So as a culture, we want our heroes (and heroines) to be even more heroic. How? Superpowers.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?
Obviously, vampires, werewolves, especially. Also, angels & fairies. I won't be surprised if vampires get a downswing before too long since the market has been so full of them lately. Though I don't expect it to vanish completely.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?
Beautiful vampires. Where are the bloodsucking & soulless vampires? Personally, I'd rather see a vampire get staked than kissed.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
When the "mortal" is just as helpful as the paranormal within the plot. I mean, maybe they can't lift a car or transform into a wolf, but that doesn't mean they'll constantly need rescuing. Other than that, fun spins on what would happen to society if there were vampires/weres,etc.

I hope my 2 cents were helpful in one way or another. : )
Thanks
ambience.of.rain {at} gmail.com

PS I would love it if you did a post on different sub-genres. It would be interesting & informative... maybe I can sort out some of the little differences. : )

Nykare said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

Paranormal Romance is category in which people with special abilities falls in love, meanwhile urban fantasy is just the story which includes something magical, fantastic and unnatural. So the first one is about love and the second is just about anything.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

That's really an easy one. Reading Paranormal Romance helps you escape from reality. You can be and think as whoever you want. Because our world is so ordinary, fast moving and not interesting (especially for teeangers with borring parrents and stupid school mates) we love to escape and pretend to be someone else. Pretend to have super-good ablities and so on.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

One person has special abbilities, good look, is funny, if the person is boy he has to be a bad boy. Other person has to be persistent, brave and funny. I think we, the readers, would prefer reading a book from the person who has special abbilities POV.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Yeah. Don't try with perfect vampire and a borring girl :) Both persons has to be unique and interesting. It wouldn't be bad if they are funny either. We love to laugh while reading :) Oh yeah, we love hot scenes too ;)

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
Something new, real emotions, real actions and readable writting. I also love to read from one persons POV and not from 3rd person POV.

ParaJunkee said...

For 1 your hubby's comments to New Moon were hilarious, and I think that running in the forest scene with Edward and Bella was quite awkward also. Thanks for sharing.

Here are my answers:

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

The way I interpret PNR & UF, PNR is basically a romance novel with a paranormal twist, it has the same outline as your typical romance novel, except the main character or love interest is a paranormal.

PNR book covers usually show hot guys with abs and sexy looking poses.

UF novels, while might have an underlying romance, it is not the focus of the story. A UF novel has a main character that is based within a paranormal world, usually (but not always) the main character is a paranormal themselves, or just discovering that they have paranormal abilities.

UF novels usually have their heroines/heros on the cover (girls in leather pants - boys with big wolves) instead of featuring hot abs...

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
I think of paranormal fic as escapist literature, featuring creatures and elements that are surreal and superhuman. Teens are more apt to let themselves believe, or at least embrace that potential, where as adults have to act grown-up and read grown-up things, like Sparks or some such other grown-up books.

Teens can read comics, post hot guy pics on their walls, dream of one day forming a psychic ability...and no one looks at them and says grown-up or weirdo. Where as an adult when you do things like this (even though they want to!) people think you are weird, eccentric, goth...the list goes on.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Genies seem to be coming in fashion, I think faeries might be going out, there is a running debate whether the hot genre dystopian is lumped within paranormal - but I think that might be more science fiction.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

The stereotyped teen characters that seem soo popular, like the jock, the prep, the goth...they just seem overdone, when most teens I know are individuals. There are categories where teens fit within these stereotypes, but don't make it so obvious. Just because Joe is a Jock doesn't mean he necessarily has blond hair and drives a truck with Fear This on the back...etc.

YA faeries seem overdone, but haven't really been that touched on in adult fic.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

The delivery. Just because it is a YA novel doesn't mean it has to be full of slang and pop culture references. A unique take on the usual outline will always set a novel apart from the rest. Even if the story has been told a thousand times (on the lines of Romeo & Juliette) if it is done properly with real emotions and well developed characters, people will love it.

I hope this helps you out!

parajunkee at gmail.com

Mandy said...

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?:
Its a great way to escape, and the romances are always fast and hard, which people need sometimes.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?:
Dystopians, vampires

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?:
Dark, mysterious, hot, quiet guy falls for lonely loser plain jane new girl

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?:
I new twist, and interesting interpretation.

bratdownstairs @yahoo.com

Chas @ LLL said...

Wow, So many wonderful replies!!


I wanted to first off start with saying.... yogurt and a water bottle. My 3 almosot 4 yo and almost 6 yo know that on weekends mommy moves at a slow pace. Thus, they help themselves to what I have previously prepared- usually yogurt. Then I have a prepared water bottle and they can add cranberries or cranola. I have easy to open containers on the counter. With that they fend for themselves until I wake at 700...yes, my kids are early birds like your son.


Second... New Moon and those clothes... I did not get that. I think they should have used Bella's first run/hunting in the forest right after she wakes as vampire Bella. Gorgeous gown and graceful. That would have been a better look into the future.


As for the last bit.

I think YA is popular because there is an innocent element to the characters. For me, YA romance reminds me of young love. I enjoy reminiscing especially since I've been with my high school sweetheart for 10 years now. YA, generally, is an easy read and in todays hustle and bustle it is nice to enjoy an entertaining read.


Paranormal. My reason for reading is. I already life reality. I already live life. When I read I want something more. I want to go somewhere impossible and leave the possible at the door.
I steer away from suspense without paranormal because if i want plaino stalker, serial killer, murdering, rape, etc I can watch the news for that.
I want something that is entertaining, mind boggling(paranormal twist and turns), romance & passion, exciting, etc. Basically, I want to get lost and wrapped up into a world of make believe and wonder how in the world this author conjured up this novel.



Best wishes to you and I hope you find some great content in the comments!!=)


Aloha

Shauna said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

I’d say the most important difference is that Urban Fantasy does not need to have anything paranormal while Paranormal Romance does! I suppose you really don’t need any romance in UF either. Many of the crime shows and novels are UF. As long as it’s set in a city it can be UF. And obviously PR can be set in the most rural of places!

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

I think because these are the Fairy Tales of today. Today’s girls (and women) have been there and done that with the whole wannabe-Princess meets Prince, etc, etc. This is the way to be swept off your feet these days. The requirements: be a normal girl, be slightly down on yourself or disenchanted with life, meet a really hot guy who should be way out of your league. So far, most girls will feel they fit that mold. Then turn said hot guy into something fabulous, dangerous, and totally into the girl… BINGO! Validation without the dumb pointy hat and cumbersome gowns.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

As a reader, I’d like all of the wonderful authors that I enjoy to branch out from Vampires and Werewolves. They are great, but lets get more creative! Throw in a new creature or different powers, or… I don’t know. Surprise me!!! That would be the best, something really unexpected!


D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

17-year-old girls. I understand why they are used, they are old enough to have romance, they’re on the cusp of adulthood and have enough freedom to make the story even possible. But a little older wouldn’t hurt would it???

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

100% -- it’s because of the depth of the characters. The more real the people feel, the more out there you can get with their situations. And the more the readers will actually care about what happens to them. (this is also why people liked Edward in the books and can't stand him in the movies... other than the fact that Jacob makes him look nasty... he has NO PERSONALITY! And did I mention that he looks nasty?? Oh yeah, I did.)

Thanks for this opportunity to think and voice opinions! I don't get enough of that these days!

T.J. said...

I really don't know if I want to answer the questions because I may be listening to you present these answers on Friday....eh, then I'd feel cool if you use any of my thoughts.
A) I see Paranormal Romance as an Urban Fantasy where the story focuses on romantic ideals. I'd say that Twilight is the classic Paranormal Fantasy
B) YA Paranormal Romance is popular for one reason: Twilight. Twilight is popular because of the way it made girls feel when they read it. The romance between Bella and Edward is just as 'forbidden' as Romeo and Juliet. People like 'forbidden' and since Twilight created a new 'culture', Paranormal Romance has been going with it.
C) Honestly, I don't read paranormal romance, so I can't say.
D) I'm kinda tired of Werewolves and Vampires....I see tons of agents trying to steer people away from them.
E) I don't think I can answer this one.

Aubrey (AKA Stacey) said...

I didn't read any of the comments so I wasn't tainted by their answers. Here are mine!

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

In my head Urban Fantasy first and foremost doesn't have to have any romance element to it. Think something like X-men. But it certainly has to be in the contemporary world.

Paranormal Romance is first and foremost a romantic story but there is a paranormal element or twist to the plot.

In the end a paranormal romance can also fall under the urban fantasy category and vice versa. So it can be tricky.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

I think love stories have always been part of the repertoire of human story telling. Love is the reason for living, being and existing.

Adding a paranormal element adds not only something new and exciting to romance, but it is a way to talk about and face some really hard issues in the real world without getting too didactic.

Plus you can't ignore the escape factor.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

I know fallen angels are big, fairies are always big.

I personally am looking for more Greek Mythology (or other ancient mythologies) themes.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

One can argue that vampires are over done, but the thing is, they are overdone because they are so popular. I think there will always be a market for them. The problem is finding a new twist.

In the end I think writers need to write what comes to them, what they are passionate about and what fascinates them. With a genuine interest in any subject one can attract readers.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

For me it is the ability to evoke emotions, to make a story so real and one that I am so engrossed in that I physically feel the character's pain, joy, laughter -- all of these things is what makes me fall in love with a story. Plus a really hot male protagonist that is literally out of this world always helps. ;)

Britt said...

LOL!!

Interesting questions.
A) I think of paranormal as being modern setting with paranormal creatures or events. Urban fantasy to me (and I could be wrong) is more of a fantasy setting with modern language and feel.

B) I'm not sure, but I think it's probably Stephanie Meyer's fault.

C) I think the "finding out you're really a [insert your favorite creature here]" trend is ever-popular.

D) Vampires. I'm sick of them. Bleh

E) Unique twists and vibrant descriptions and language.

:D

The Book Vixen said...

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

-Twilight. That series made PNR famous! Meyer made Bella life-like and likable (naive at times but still relatable). And Edward made teenage girls swoon. And Jacob made us Pumas and Cougars come out of the wordworks :)

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

-vampires, werewolves and zombies. Also, a lot of the stay-away-from-him-he's-not-good-for-you storylines.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

-human girl falls in love with vampire boy. It's overdone but I'm still a sucker for it!

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

-uniqueness. Something different to the story that leaves you saying "whoa, I totally wasn't expecting that." The element of surprise.

I tweeted


thebookvixen at gmail dot com

Brenda said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
Urban Fantasy the story takes place in the city…Paranormal Romance can take place in an Urban Fantasy or so place else…it isn’t defined by a place rather by the type of characters.
B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
Just from my own 36 year old point of view….Ienjoy them because they are fun reading, free from the clutter of sexual details, seem to have a twist on the subject and I can relate to the characters since I was a teen/young adult once. I read a book to be entertained not to strain my brain. (at least most of the time lol)
C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre? Nocturnal creatures that come in both good and evil seem to the favorite…I know I search out these types of character books.
D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?
I agree with what others have said….as long as the writer has their own twist it doesn’t feel overdone.
E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
General romance is pretty ho hum boring…I love the paranormal aspect..keeps me reading and gives me suspence. Since I am not a “horror” fan (I’m too chicken to read horror) this gives genre cures my craving for a scary/creepy story. I also love that creatures like vampires and werewolves don't really exist...makes reading the creepy stuff more fun!

By the way...just finished The Dark Divine...LOVED it!!! Thanks for the fun read!!!

Cassie said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
I think that with Paranormal Romance you have a stronger focus on the romance than the supernatural elements (which, I must add, are important to the story and can be really rich). I think that Urban Fantasy is the opposite, there is more emphasis on the supernatural than the romance (which again is still important to a story), and I think it has a darker vibe.
B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
Because everyone needs a little magic and mystery in their lives!
C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?
The theme of choosing how you act as opposed to following your nature seems to be the big trend. I haven’t read anything yet (but there might be something out there) where the love interest eats the main character because choosing the higher road is too much work.
D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?
Vampires are overdone, though they can still be done well.
Here’s the cliché that bothers me the most: Why do so many of the wonderful men have “intense eyes”? Yes, they can study things intently, but really, all I can think of when I read that description is that the dude has crazy staring eyes! And they’re burning holes in some poor girl! I’ve read this description in a lot of books and it creeps me out. There has to be a clearer way to describe someone’s eyes, because you know that the intent is not to say that the guy is crazy and has a staring problem. Still, the next time I read about a character with intense eyes, I’m going to pray that those intense eyes get pecked out by a flock of birds!
E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
Concise writing, originality, and meticulous editing.

Arya said...

That's so funny! So you're hubby going with you to see Eclipse now?? =)


A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

Paranormal Romance (to me) is more about a supernatural person and a normal person falling in love. While Urban Fantasy is a bit broader including our favorite high fantasy creatures in a sort of modern setting.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

Everyone know the vampire (and other creatures) romance mainly revolves around sex. Even if the reader doesn't completely realize it at the time.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

I think werewolves and faeries especially are trying to push the vampires off the market.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

If you want your romantic characters to seperate for a while, don't make it where one is afraid of killing the other. Its not just Twilight, I've seen this in ALOT of books. Also, if you are going to have a love-triangle, make sure there's a damn good reason for it.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

Something with STRONG characters. No one depends completely on anyone else. Also voice. Alot of YA paranormal romances now are written bluntly with a strictly teenage vocabulary. Lyrical prose really puts a great spin on things.

-Arya
http://seaofpages.blogspot.com
hollywood_here_i_come@live.com

Jen Lamoureux said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
To me Paranormal Romance is focused on the relationship between the characters and the element of paranormal involved such as mind reading, casting, etc. The setting is typically not in a big city but a more close knit community. Some examples of this would be Beautiful Creatures, Dirty Little Secrets and The Dark Divine. Urban Fantasy has a much grittier feel and takes place in a city. The city backdrop plays a pertinent role in setting up the story. It’s kind of like the city is part of the evil in the story. Oh and that’s another element typically Urban Fantasy is about good versus evil explicitly with a side of romance typically in the form of a hot guy with a sword (Demon’s Lexicon, Mortal Instruments Series) Urban fantasy is more about the problem with a side of romance and longing looks in the face of danger where as Paranormal Romance is more about the couple with crazy powers thrown in to make it exciting.
B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
People like to escape the ordinary and paranormal romance gives the people characters to be invested in with something different thrown in. Most PR has great characters that are relatable. You could be the lead female character or you know the girl who is the best friend. Then there is the boy who is incredibly arrogant and you want to strangle but at the same kiss because he does have a soft side somewhere. There is always something that people can connect with on some level. The paranormal part makes the story unique and a form of escapism. Don’t you wish you could turn the girl mean girls hair green or give her permanent acne? The paranormal part just adds something a little more fun than boy meets girl, there is more to work with there.
C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?
First I should start by that anything can become hot or very relevant as long as it is written well. The key to becoming a trend is to be relatable to your audience and have something that is unique. I mean there are tons of vampire books out there right now but the ones that are really good take a different perspective to the traditional lore. That being said some of the trends I have noticed emerging are witches and wizards. I really liked the story in the Wizard Heir series and I just read Brightly Woven which was a beautiful story in a world unlike our own and had an element of magic. Both of these are very different stories with the same paranormal element. Demons are another emerging trend. The Demon’s Lexicon was a fantastic take on this concept as was the Devil’s Kiss which incorporated Templar lore as well.
D. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
The story has to be unique no matter what the element of paranormal is; if the story doesn’t approach it in a unique manner it can be boring and predictable. There is nothing worse than a predictable book. And if the book is part of a series cliff hangers are good. You want people to be asking what will happen next how on earth will that resolve itself? I guess a good book ends up being something you never expected. You knew the elements going in but as you read something completely unique unfolded in front you and it was a fantastic experience. The book that comes to mind when I think about this is The Demon’s Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan. I read that book thinking I knew where it was going and what all the elements were but in the end I never saw it coming. It was a great read because everything I thought I knew was challenged and I had to rethink where the next book was going and how the issue would resolve itself.
I hope these answers make sense! I tried to explain what it was like for me when I read a book that is really good and what I look for when choosing books.
Jen

Karen said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
UF should be grounded in reality (aka the real world w/paranormal elements) whereas PR can create an entire fantasy world

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
I think it's a safe way for girls to explore feelings of romance/true love/crushes set in an over the top fantasy world. That way is sometimes preferred to the painful reality of it all.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?
Zombies seem to the new vampires - the love triangle and post apocolyptic settings.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?
I'm kind of getting tired of the love triangle. Don't get me worng - there are a lot of great ones - but there are just so many of them - what is wrong with a solid relationship?? Cheerleader zombie books

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
I like being taken into a new world - a different twist on on a concept than what's already been done. Smart characters

Tori [Book Faery] said...

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

Urban Fantasy: Modern day setting/reality with paranormal aspects. Can have love interests, but it's main focus are other aspects of the book.

PNR: Whole focus of the story is the romance and rocky approach towards the couple's eventual (and guaranteed) HEA. One of the members in said couple is a paranormal character.



B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

A lot of people enjoy YA lit in general. Paranormal stories are so popular as of late because of America's craze with vampires. There's this huge emphasis on wanting to be/desiring a vampire lover because they represent immortality, forever maintaining a youthful appearance, and because you would assume they're kinky in bed.

In regards to YA paranormal romances, you're guaranteed that fairy tale ending for a young woman. Plus, not everyone loves to read about sex in their stories. Talented authors have the ability to make the sexual tension a lot more gratifying as opposed to some PNR books that jump straight into sex.


C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

I suppose every chick in the story is pining for that badass that they're "not good enough" to be with because they're the reject. I've heard a lot of complaints about the males in these stories and how they're abusive to an extent, magnifying the problem in society about how girls are searching for the wrong qualities in a guy.


D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Following the cookie cutter format. Writers should write their own stories, not what they think people want to see.

I suppose that's more directed for PNR books. Girl meets guy. One resists the urges. Hot monkey sex eventually. One proclaims sex was huge mistake (while secretly wishing for more). Someone almost dies. Both realize they're in love. YAY lame ending to whatever conflict so the couple can live HEA.

Gag. I want to see more creativity, even it that means the book is no longer considered JUST a PNR. Combining lots of aspects into a book makes it a lot more interesting. You can have a plot while developing the relationship. It doesn't all have to be based upon the duo having sex or trying to seduce each other. The sappy love scenes in the end for these books make me want to gouge my eyes out.


E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

Shiver has been one of my favorite YA-PNR books. Why? Maggie doesn't seem to follow any trends that I can think of. Her writing seems genuine. There isn't a rush to get Sam and Grace together. She makes it sweet, and Grace/Sam are so convincing that I've almost cried. A writer is most successful when they get a reader that invested in a book.

Hope this helps a bit :D

Kate said...

A. Paranormal Romance is defined by the people and who (or what) they are and their relationships to eachother. Urban Fantasy is defined by the location and what makes it unique or interesting.

B. I think YA Paranormal Romance is popular because it serves as an escape. The characters are relatable in that they tend to live and function in a very realistic world, but they are something more- vampires, magic, werewolves, etc functioning in a world thats not too different then teh real world is fun and makes you think "what if?"

C. I see writers leaping outside the box in their supes. Creating a new canon if you will. For example-we've all seen vamps, so I think there will start to be twists on the story in order to keep it fresh and interesting. I also think that more and more stories are incorporating Faeries into the bunch so I'm thinking we will get more of that as well.

D. For me, personally, the love triangle seems totally overdone. Especially the idea that the girl (or guy) is torn between the best friend who has always been there and been loyal and the new guy (or girl) whi is mysterious and dangerous. I cringe everything I see that plot line starting up.

E. I think the element of surprise is key- it's not enough to be just another Vampire story, there needs to be something that makes it new and interesting. Taking one of my more recent faves as an Example- Maggie Steifvater's Shiver took some existing werewolf lore and twisted it just enough to be new anf fresh. You felt like you were learning along with the characters what was going on, instead of just seeing it as "another werewolf story".

Sara B. Larson said...

I love your hubby's reactions to New Moon - it sounds like mine!! :-)

Hmmm, so since I'm short on time, I'm just going to take one question to answer. One of the best ways I've heard the differences between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy described is this:

If the main theme of your book is the romance (the love story) and your story has any fantasy or paranormal elements in it, but is still set in this world, it is paranormal romance. If the romance is secondary or nonexistent to the fantasy/paranormal element and it takes place in this world it is Urban Fantasy. If it is in a different world, it is just plain Fantasy no matter how much romance is involved. Worked for me. :-)

Good luck with your presentation! I'm doing my first "speaking engagement" at the AF conference on Saturday. Just 5-10 minutes on my road to getting an agent, so nothing major, but I'm excited!

Kate said...

Great post. And I loved your husband's commentary on New Moon. Here are the answers to your questions:

A - What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

Paranormal Romance is generally a tale in which the male and female character end up with a happy ending. Generally, there is a paranormal element added in such as vampires, werewolves, faeries, etc. In these novels, the paranormal aspect is generally limited to the main characters; however, I have read some where the secondary characters also have a part in the paranormal element or are at least aware of it.

Urban Fantasy, for me, is the grittier of the two. In these, the whole world is generally apart of the element compared to Paranormal Romance where it is usually involving the main characters. These novels usually are more action and mystery focused as well.


B - Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

I think YA Paranormal Romance is popular because it involves elements that readers do not see on a day to day basis. These novels allow readers to break away from real life in order to experience something that they may wish was real, but is not. It is also romanticizes an element that in real life could and would be quite terrifying. In a novel, a vampire romance sounds lovely. He does not hurt you and possibly could offer you immortality. But the simple fact is that in real life, many could not handle the idea of these creatures being real. Look at witches. In novels, it is fun to read of about them and imagine having those kind of powers. But historically, witches or the thought of people being witches scared people for centuries. And thousands have died due to those being afraid of what they did not understand. So I think part of what makes a YA Paranormal Romance so popular is the understanding of the people in the novel's world. Since, for the most part, the element is accepted and understood.


C - What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Personally, I think that vampires have been the “It” thing for a while and may be for a while longer. But as a reader and reviewer, I have been seeing a large shift to werewolves and angels. I think that in the near future readers will be seeing a larger amount of novels featuring werewolves, but eventually we will start to see more and more of the angel trend. I can think of about five novels that will be releasing later this year involving werewolves compared to maybe two or three with angels. For the most part, I believe that depending on the uniqueness of the novels coming out it can really go in either trend's favor.

Kate said...

Questions, continued.

D - What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

For the most part, I think vampires have been done to death (no pun intended). I have read a few vampire novels recently and they all seem the same. There is nothing about them that really made to go “Wow, this is interesting. I haven't seen this before.” Personally, I look for books that may offer a certain trend such as werewolves, but offer something different. My advice for writers would be to do something different. Introduce an element that readers may not have seen before. In my opinion, it is perfectly fine to follow the trends, but the author, in the end, needs to do something to make me think that their idea is really original or unique.

As for clichés to avoid, clingy relationships... think Twilight. This is a big one for me since it sends the wrong idea to teens. I can understand the being in love part, but when the relationship starts to turn too clingy, it just seems unhealthy and unrealistic. Another one is with the love triangle. If you are going to have one, please do not make the other guy too unlikeable. I have read a few books with a love triangle and it makes it hard to really enjoy the novel if you know who is going to win right away. Make it a fair fight and this will help keep readers on their toes with who will actually win the girl in the end. Another idea might be to have the girl as the paranormal element who introduces the guy to the paranormal world instead of the other way around. I love to read about strong female characters and it might be fun to see some role reversal. And last but certainly not least... stupid female characters, again think Twilight. As I have said, I like strong female characters, and there is nothing worse for me as a reader than to read about a female character that does not have a thought in her brain. She does not have to be uber smart, just enough to believe that she is realistic. And adding some common sense, would not hurt.


E - What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

To make a YA paranormal romance novel stand out for me, it needs to feature a few things. The main thing is originality. I love when authors take an element that may be been seen before such as faeries and gives it a new look. Take Carrie Jones' novel Need. Her novel features both faeries and werewolves, but is done in a way that was completely new for me since I had never read a novel that featured both of these elements together.

Another thing is chemistry. There is nothing better than when the two main characters have chemistry. It makes them easier to relate to. And it also helps the reader fall in love with the characters. As a reader, when the characters have chemistry, I get emotionally invested. I cheer when things go right, and possibly cry through the tough times.

Humor is another element that helps a novel stand out for me. It does not have to be over the top humor, but I like to see a lighter side to the characters. It makes them feel more realistic and human.

Blogged about it:

http://www.theneverendingshelf.com/2010/04/bree-despain-needs-your-help.html

http://www.theneverendingshelf.com/2010/04/my-answers-to-bree.html

On Twitter:

http://twitter.com/neshelf/status/12533598869

http://twitter.com/neshelf/status/12529120860

Dani. said...

A. Paranormal Romance has elements of things paranormal (vampires, werewolves etc.), but an urban fantasy is one that creates its own world unlike the one were in.


B. YA Para Romance is so popular because 1.) everyone loves a romance, but 2.) its not just something you can see everyday in your own life.

C. Currently, faeries, vamps, and werewolves are dominating the Paranormal field, but I think in the near future I we'll see more unique "creatures" such as Rachel Vincent's Soul Screamers series.

D. I think everybody is in agreement that if you aren't already sick of them, if authors don't tone done the amount of ordinary girl falls in love with mysterious guy that this trend will get old, FAST!

E. Needs something original. Whether this be in the concept, the characters, or the actual plot. But humor, atleast in my opinion, is a HUGE plus. Uhm, need I remind you of Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments series??? :)

Jackson Porter said...

Here, I promoted it on my blog.

www.jacksonporter.blogspot.com

-Jackson

Bree Biesinger Despain said...

Thanks, all! You guys are so insightful. I'm especially interested in how many different definitions of PRN an UF we're coming up with here.

This is so much fun!

Shauna Kemp said...

Wow, this is awesome Bree! I wish I could sit in your class and listen to hear what all you come up with! I wish I could help too, but I have a class that I'm putting together as well for Friday, but mines not paranormal, bummer. Best of luck & I hope to hear more about it! Maybe post your conclusions?

Oh, and my hubby & I had similar conversations, LOL. Only due to the books I was actually an Edward fan, but Taylor sure does play an excellent wolf so that does challenge my position in New Moon! LOL. =]

Take care! ~Shauna

Margay said...

Wow, what a great set of questions! They really make you think. Here's my take on them:

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?

The only difference I can see is location - urban being in the city, paranormal being anywhere. I could be wrong, but otherwise, they seem quite similar.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?

I think teens feel so helpless because so many things are happening in their lives at once, so many changes are going on with their bodies, their emotions, their lives, that they feel they don't have control over anything. Who wouldn't want to have some special power or some special purpose to free them from the confusion of their lives?

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?

Anything to do with fairies seems very popular right now. And angels.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?

Vampires and teen wolves are fully covered.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?

I think first and foremost, it comes down to the characters. If the characters aren't likable, it's hard to get into the story no matter how interesting the plot, how wonderful the writing. You never want to start reading a book and wonder, Why should I care about these people? Right from the start, you should be engaged with them - like they're your best friend. You'd want to make sure your best friend was going to be okay, right? That's how it should be in the books you read.

Hope that made sense!

Margay

Meg said...

Loved your husband's reaction to New Moon!

A. What is the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy?
I'd say the difference is in how much emphasis is put on the romance vs. how much emphasis is on the plot and setting. I'd consider The Dark Divine and Lauren Kate's Fallen to be Paranormal Romance, while Cassandra Clare's books and Kelly's Armstrong's Darkest Powers are more Urban Fantasy.

B. Why do you think YA Paranormal Romance is so popular?
I think it's a combination of things: the escapism, the enjoyment of the romance, combined with the interest of something otherworldly happening. Additionally, paranormal makes it easier to do things like True Love or Fated/Cursed Love or Eternal Love because the characters are often immortal.

C. What trends are do see as being hot right now (or in the near future) in the YA paranormal romance genre?
Angels seem to be a big thing, but vamps aren't dead yet. I think ghosts are starting to get bigger, and just gothic-toned stories in general. I've also noticed a rise in werewolf paranormals, which makes this werewolf fangirl incredibly happy.

D. What trends seem overdone? Any clichés writers may want to avoid?
I may not be in the norm, but I really don't like One True Loves. Makes me roll my eyes and the writer has to work much harder to keep my attention after that. I like my romances realistic. True love can happen more than once.

E. What makes a favorite YA paranormal romance novel really stand out from the pack?
As I said, realistic romance where the characters realize they're teenagers and have time left before they settle down and grow up. Also a really unique/obscure mythology. I was REALLY happy when I read TDD and realized it was using the Hound of God mythology, because it's so rarely touched on.

Bree Biesinger Despain said...

Thank you so much for all the great comments! You guys are really helping out with my presentation.

The contest is now closed. I'll announce the winner and post my notes for the class soon.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Okay, your husband is so watching Eclipse with me. My huband (who has a drool worthy bod like Taylor's) doesn't make comments anywhere near as amusing as the ones your husband makes.

Carolina Valdez Miller said...

Hm, I'm thinkingg your husband and child may be clones of mine. I have a 3 (almost 4) year old who attempts to pull all-nighters pretty much every night. And my husband gave me almost the exact same comments when I forced him to watch New Moon. How bizarre.

Ok, questions! Fun fun!

1. The difference I think has to do more with setting. Urban fantasy is always set in an urban setting, whereas paranormal can be anywhere. I'd venture that paranormal also tends to have more magical creatures as well--shapeshifters, vampires, werewolves and that sort of thing, but this is just a guess.

2. My guess is paranormal romance is popular because we live in a society that no longer seems to value policemen and firefighters nearly as much. Perhaps we don't think of them as invulnerable as we once did, and I think too, we long for superheroes--for invincibility and magic and immortality. We want escape from the real world.

3. I think mermaids will be picking up soon. Angels may be around for a while, and honestly, I don't even think vampires will entirely die down. We have such a fascination with the bad boy. Werewolves seem to be strong, too.

D. Vampires, maybe. So many. EVERYwhere. Not sure about cliches really. Honestly, cliches still sell, as much as some hate them.

E. I think standouts give us something fresh and original. A strong voice is always a must. I also like some humor in my YA.

Yes, I realize I started my answers with a number system and changed partway. I think I just felt I needed a change of pace. (It has nothing to do with the fact I realized halfway you had used letters instead of numbers in your questions. Of course).

Good luck with your class! BTW, I followed you from Courtney Barr's blog :)