Sunday, February 8, 2009

Soldiering On In A Regency-less World

In the months (6 to be exact) since my last post, I've been hard at work on a number of writing projects, including a couple of Regencies that have shaped up nicely. I'm pleased with the results of my labors; and now that my new Regencies are essentially in final form and ready to be sent off to the publisher, the question must be asked: "What publisher?"

We all know the major romance publishers dropped dedicated Regency lines some years ago, leaving traditional Regency authors and readers with essentially two options:

  • Adapt to the Historical Romance lines. There's a definite market for historical romances set in the Regency period. But let's face it: historical romances set in the Regency period are not the same as traditional Regency romances. Historicals concentrate less on the manners and cultural elements of the Regency era. And traditional Regencies focus more on the romance of two people falling in love than the passionate expliciteness demanded of historical romances.
  • Find a niche publisher. There are opportunities to publish in formats that are dedicated to a specific reading population. For instance, ebook publishers have given life to new and reprint Regencies . . . and the Christian fiction market has provided a home for traditional Regencies that project a message of inspiration. But anytime you write for a specific niche market, you automatically exclude a wider audience and limit your readership.
As a writer, I always want my work to be easily read by the audience I write for.* Today's market makes that a little harder than it used to be . . . but it's not impossible. I'm ready to take on the challenge of seeing my next book in published form with all the elements of a traditional Regency romance safely intact. Wish me luck!
* Yes, I know. The sentence should read, "I always want my work to be easily read by the audience for whom I write."