In December 2010, Scholastic’s book club, book fair, and publishing editors looked back at the preceding months and agreed on “Ten Trends in Children’s Books from 2010.” They were:
- The expanding Young Adult (YA) audience.
- The year of dystopian fiction.
- Mythology-based fantasy.
- Multimedia series.
- A focus on popular characters – from all media.
- The shift in picture books [actually a shift from them, with picture-book characters “showing up in Beginning Reader books”].
- The return to humor.
- The rise of the diary and journal format.
- Special-needs protagonists.
- Paranormal romance beyond vampires.
This year (I couldn’t find if editors prognosticated in 2011), Scholastic’s editors looked ahead and “Forecast Top 10 Trends In Children's Books For 2013.”
- Bullying is THE Timely Topic in Kids’ Books.
- ’13 Will be a Lucky Number for Science Fiction Fans.
- Intriguing Nonfiction.
- Kid Lit on the Screen.
- Tough Girls.
- Survival Stories.
- Spotlight on Diversity.
- Nature Runs Amok.
These predictions come with “hot” titles attached, some from Scholastic and others, I bet, carried by its book clubs. So does this list simply reflect what the editors already believe? Is it a form of marketing within the industry? Or does the company’s market share mean that this is a self-fulfilling prophecy?