Is the Paranormal fad coming to an end? Questions some writers need to ask!

Posted: January 28, 2013 in Questions
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I’ve always prided myself as being a fairly good writer of paranormal based fiction.  Ghosts, Cryptozoology, and even Sci-fi are fun to write about and can send the mind into overdrive if good descriptions and thorough character development is used.

Since the beginning of the 1990’s, Paranormal subjects have kicked into overdrive.  With the development of Reality shows like “Ghost Hunters” and “Ghost Adventures” however, one has to wonder about the staying power of such subjects.  The search for Ghosts, the study of witchcraft, and new age studies have reached new heights within the past two + decades, eclipsing the length of the interest in these things the last time they were in fashion…ie the 1920’s, and perhaps briefly in the early 70’s with the interest in ESP.

There are, however, always going to be exceptions to every rule.  Stephen King, Anne Rice, Clive Barker, and even Charlaine Harris have all had successful careers spanning several decades writing about supernatural things.  One would think that this would be indicative of the stability of the subject matter, but I’m not so sure that it is.  These writers are exceptionally good at thier craft and thus could make neary anything they chose to write about worth reading.  As much as I hate to admit it, I definitely not another Stephen King, or any of those authors for that matter.  While I strive to become that good at the craft, I don’t know that I will ever be up to that level of excellence.

This brings me to the overall question here.  How long can one bank of fads and is it a good idea to put my supernatural related ideas on hold until this fad comes around for another bout?

I’d be really interested to hear what you folks think about this, and the success of books based on current public interest levels in the subject matter of the work.

  1. philosophersocrates says:

    I suppose it depends in what media it’s in or out of fashion. I felt like reality shows pushed out fantasy, sci fi and supernatural all in one blow but that it was recently coming back in fashion.

    • blondmyk says:

      Humm. There have been recent strides in these kinds of shows, and I agree that they are making a come back. I’ll take “Grimm” as a good example of this. But I still feel like shows like “Ghost Hunters” and even “The Vampire Diaries” are waning in popularity, which leads me to believe that the fad is slowly closing down.

      The Sy-Fy Channel (I hate that spelling) has been on my hate list lately because it has been dumping great paranormal/sci-fi themed shows like “Eureka” and even “Farscape” in favor of this reality show garbage like “Deals from the Darkside” and “Pitch Black” with Urkel. I was shocked when they cited ratings as the reason for these decisions, especially when both shows were experiencing the highest ratings that they had ever had. Now I bite my tongue with the new shows “Defiance” and “Continuum” coming out. Those look like true Science Fiction. The paranormal fad is trending down however, and I see “Ghost Hunters” ending very soon…IMHO.
      That doesn’t bode well for me as a writer of that sort of fiction.

  2. David Carpenter says:

    I guess you have to know your target demographic. A lot of commercial fiction is formulaic;i.e. it pushes the tropes the readers want to see/identify with. Most military Sci-Fi fans aren’t going to identify with a bodice-ripper no matter how well it’s written. The current vampire-angst fad is peaking, but the original Dracula novel was written in the 1890’s and is still being read.

    • blondmyk says:

      Again I reiterate that Dracula was written by a Master–Stoker. But I say that and haven’t read any of his other work…and don’t, in fact, even know if he has done any other work! LOL! So…is he a master? I would have to still say yes. Somehow, there are just some writers who can overcome a fad and cross those lines. I need to learn how to do that.

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