Friday, December 28, 2012

OK ... What Now Post Apocalypse Authors?

The world didn't end, not many of us were surprised, but I am left to wonder if the obsession with the apocalypse has reached its climax and fast makes its way down the hill of lost fads.

Now, I suppose there will still be the diehards out there. Me being one of them. But I also feel the success of the apocalypse media was due mainly to the failed Mayan prediction. The hype of years worth of build up.

I didn't start writing Post Apocalypse and ‘End of the World’ fiction out of some Mayan frenzy. Hell, my first short story was Disaster in the Liberty Tubes (At the age of ten), and full length novel was called, ‘They will Destroy Us’, and I wrote it at the age of 15. It was about aliens. Those of you who know how old I am, know that was long before Y2k and even the 2012 thing.

As the year 2012 crept up, thousands of writers jumped the bandwagon and penned PA fiction (Post Apocalypse). They never wrote one before and probably won’t again.  There are those of us who have a passion for writing it and those who write it for the hype. The positive thing is a lot of those novelist lost their incentive and probably will never pen another PA book, while those of us who live in that world will continue to write it. The market, this time next year, won’t be as flooded with new material.

Problem is, will people still buy it?

Years ago, no one would publish PA fiction. Unless of course it had a happy ending or miraculously, a deadly outbreak with a 99.9 percent fatality and communicability rate is suddenly stopped by a hero in a chopper (Outbreak). Hollywood, New York, they wanted those dismal world ending stories kept to a minimum.

They said, ‘The reader/viewership was minimum and the market too small’, but that changed as the Mayan prediction closed in. Suddenly the market grew, movies, zombies, you name it. I have a ton of rejections to prove that.

Again, I am left to wonder if the market will still be there? Sure, there are people like me that are glad there are plenty of PA book to choose from now. Years ago, I couldn’t get my hands on one.

As a writer who writes primarily PA fiction, I see a positive and a negative to the flopped 2012 doomsday.

On a positive, within six months, the new PA material won’t be as plentiful, competition won’t be as fierce. Those one hit wonders driven to capitalize on the fear of the masses won’t be putting out PA books for free or 99 cents burying the good ones and/or forcing many of us to mark down our own books so we make only 30 cents a copy.

We, the professional PA/Zombie book writers will still be here.

On the down side, I don’t think the market will be there like it was.  People won’t be flocking to download kindle editions that tell of the world’s demise.

I hope I’m wrong. Someone tell me I am wrong.

There are many, many writers out there that only write PA/Zombie style fiction and always have before it was cool to write it. I hope for their sake, the market stays.

I’m fortunate, because I write other things besides PA/Zombie. I'm not stuck in a writing rut. I have romance, horror, comedy, religious fiction, mystery, YA … I have them all out there for sale. Maybe now, they’ll get noticed. People/readers don't realize, I have 20 titles out  there that are not Apocalypse. 20. I know people don't know this because no one really buys them. However, I think I may be in a better position than a lot of PA writers who rely heavily on a world's end obsession. 

Actually, from my own sales stats, my non PA books have picked up some. In fact, my non PA books dribbled in sales before this and this month alone, the month of the failed apocalypse, I seen a near 400% increase in non PA book sales. While my PA books took a sharp turn down. Now don’t get excited. 400% increase against near nothing is still  low, but still the low number was the norm. This was my best Non PA book month to date.

Again, I hope I am wrong. I will continue to write PA fiction. I'm finishing up a dozy now.  But I think it may be time to concentrate on my non PA works just as much.

What say you?


  1. "Years ago, I couldn’t get my hands on one."

    Me either. Every week I searched the local book stores and libraries for new PA books. I have loved that there have been so many available the last two years. I sincerely hope that it continues, because I want more PA books!

    Few of the newer PA writers are as good as you, Craig DiLouie, Jeff Brackett, and Steve Konkoly are. I'm so grateful to Amazon for coming out with Kindles since it's so easy, and so much less expensive, to find and buy new PA books now. I never would have found you, Jackie, if I hadn't bought a Kindle.

  2. I think maybe people loyal to you buy right away and then it levels to new readers. That's why it looks like a lower number? Anyway, I know several friends recently bought a non PA book you wrote and loved it but a couple of those friends also bought your PA books. The "free" kindle books available must cut into numbers also?

    As for PA and me, I read the Go Go Girls of the Apocalypse a couple of years ago and from that point on, I was hooked to PA books. I really don't think those addicted will ever stop and they continue to bring new readers to the table. The key is quality and the bandwagon riders don't produce quality. They will dry up and blow away.

    1. Wow Kathy that is such a profound reply. Thank you it gives me another way to view things. And please thank those you know who got my non pa books. It's very encouraging