Reading: 5 Things To Know About The New Romance Genre
Contemporary romance, a literary genre that has been booming for the past decade, no longer has much in common with the old-fashioned sentimental novels. Here are 5 things to know about the New Romance genre that has won over the general public.
These are love stories spiced with eroticism.
Unlike the old-fashioned romance novels, contemporary romance or New Romance is a literary genre that includes an erotic dimension, with explicit sex scenes.
The novel "Fifty Shades of Grey," released in 2012, is generally considered the archetype of the genre and the origin of this new literary phenomenon.
Following the success of E.L. James's trilogy, which sold 125 million copies worldwide and its highly profitable film adaptation, this literary genre has become mainstream, and some publishing houses like Hugo Publishing have specialized in New Romance.
Critics hate it, but female readers love it.
New Romance is a literary genre often criticized by reviewers and scorned by the media. No Goncourt or Renaudot Prize for these types of novels, but a real popular success, especially among young women aged 18 to 25.
Even if this genre is sometimes described as porn for housewives or bad literature, the exclusively female audience never tires of these soft-erotic love stories. Love takes center stage, and despite the difficulties encountered by the characters, the ending is always happy.
These feel-good books, written by women authors, allow other women to dream, escape from everyday life, and address more serious topics such as school bullying, fatphobia, or domestic violence.
This literary genre brings in millions of dollars.
Despite literary critics' disapproval, it is the readers, or rather the female readers, who always have the final say! For the past ten years, the enthusiasm of female readers for contemporary romances has remained unabated.
Although numerous clichés exist about these books, romance is a genre that continues to evolve and attract an increasingly large community of readers.
New Romance has even become a particularly lucrative genre for publishers, as these happy love stories generate millions of dollars in the United States and France.
For example, Hugo Publishing releases between 80 and 100 titles by French and American authors each year, and these romances account for 30% of its revenue.
In 2023, the consumption of romance in print format jumped by 40%. The rise of this genre is even more pronounced in digital formats, with Nextory France reporting a 60% increase in readership for romance titles.
Bestsellers of the genre have been released on writing platforms.
New Romance works don't necessarily go through traditional publishing channels and are abundant on digital writing and self-publishing platforms.
Did you know, for example, that the bestseller "After" by Anna Todd was first written on Wattpad, a platform that brings together 90 million readers and aspiring writers? Publishing houses use these digital platforms to spot new talent and test their success with online audiences before publishing them.
5- New Romance has its own festival.
It was in 2016 that the publishing house Hugo Publishing created the Festival New Romance or FNR. From the first year, this event was a success.
Since then, the festival has become a must-attend for fans. It offers them the chance to meet the authors and have their favorite novels signed, as well as to discover new releases in the genre before anyone else.
After organizing the 2022 edition in Nice, Hugo Publishing has set a date with attendees in Strasbourg in early November 2023 for a 7th edition packed with activities: meetings with renowned female authors, parties, creative workshops, and the awarding of the Nextory Prize for Best Romance of 2023.