Prehistoric Fiction Writers and Readers Campfire discussion

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Prehistoric Fiction Publishers

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message 1: by Ron (new)

Ron Rayborne | 17 comments It occurs to me, just a random thought. AFAIK, most major sub-genres have their own publishers which specialize in that sub-genre. Does prehistoric fiction, and if not why not? It can't be for lack of material or interest. Seems like it'd be profitable for the pub house too.

Would be so much easier for PF authors if there were such a place to send our stories to. If there is and I've just missed it, my apologies.


message 2: by J. (new)

J. Layden | 22 comments I am not sure you are right that it can't be for lack of material or interest. I search google trends for keywords relating to Prehistoric Fiction and there are no results- meaning that no or few people are searching for it. There is so little on youtube about the genre that I and another fellow campfire member are number 1 and 2 for it there- neither of us has a trad publisher and neither of us has over 1000 hits for the video! I imagine it would be no problem to get your book to the top of the amazon prehistoric fiction charts, but not sure that anyone wouold see it there. The lack of interest astounds me.


message 3: by Ron (new)

Ron Rayborne | 17 comments Hmm. Thanks J. Considering the popularity of certain PF authors, it's a head scratcher.


message 4: by Ron (new)

Ron Fritsch (ronfritsch) Does Amazon even have a prehistoric fiction category?


message 5: by Ron (new)

Ron Rayborne | 17 comments https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/s/ref=is...

Just saw this yesterday in reading another GRPF thread. Trying to figure out how to get my book on it.


message 6: by Ron (new)

Ron Fritsch (ronfritsch) The list appears to be the result of an Amazon books search for "prehistoric fiction novels." I believe books land on that list if they sell. A lot of children's dinosaur books seem to take up many of the spots. A few people on the first page sponsor (pay for) their listings.


message 7: by Ron (new)

Ron Rayborne | 17 comments My apologies in advance for all the links. It jst kept growing as my research continued.


Odd that that list contains 318 results, uet the following with the same search words has 436.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/s/ref=is...

Is there an official list of book genres or sub-genres? And what qualifies those books to be there? Even if not an official category, obviously you'd want to be findable when someone types in "prehistoric fiction".

Here's an abbreviated list of browse categories in SF, and keywords required to be there.

https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A...

This is the closest I found to an actual list of SF categories (at the bottom).

https://www.amazon.com/b/ref=dri_3_15...

So what key words would make PF findable?

Perhaps it's dependent on available Bisac Subject Codes?

https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A...

For SF in the following list though I count only 11 sub-categpries (vs 21 on Amazon).

http://bisg.org/page/Fiction

Perhaps it's a matter of requesting the addition of a category of either Amazon or BISG?

http://bisg.org/page/BISACSuggestion/


message 8: by Ron (new)

Ron Rayborne | 17 comments Regarding J.Lyon's comments above about a supposed lack of interest, I happened upon the following:

Someone asking for help on an Amazon forum for help finding PF and being directed offsite. Wouldn't have to do that if such a category already existed

http://www.amazon.com/forum/historica...

Three PF fans lists:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/richpub/list...

https://www.amazon.com/gp/richpub/lis...

https://www.amazon.com/gp/richpub/lis...

Finally, there's this list:

https://www.goodreads.com/shelf/show/...

Sorry the topic has strayed from the discussion of finding PF agents/publishers (my bad).


message 9: by J. (last edited Jul 26, 2016 09:24PM) (new)

J. Layden | 22 comments I think that the wane in interest is due to the fact that it has been soooo long since we had a blockbuster or bestseller. When people hear "prehistoric fiction" in America, they think "Clan of the Cave Bear" and expect more of the same.
10,000 BC wasn't as terrible as the critics said, but it had no well known actors and could have been better.
Most agents and readers don't know that we can give them more than bear hides, clubs, and saber tooth tigers. They don't know about all the cool new late-surviving hominids and animals, and they don't know about all the prehistoric clothing and weapons. they don't realize that we can give them enough gore, fashion, sex, monsters, political intrigue, and magic to rival Game of Thrones.
They think it's probably going to be just another story about a woman saving her blue eyed infant from sadistic patriarchal shamans.
Can we get them past that, or are we doomed until the Universal Mind comes back around and gives the genre a second chance?


message 10: by Ron (new)

Ron Fritsch (ronfritsch) I think you could be right, J. Reviewers tended to compare my four prehistoric Promised Valley novels favorably with Jean Auel's Earth's Children novels. One review said my characters had more "compassionate" characters. The reviews didn't seem to do that much good. They might've been more helpful if they hadn't mentioned Auel.


message 11: by Ron (new)

Ron Rayborne | 17 comments I think what you're saying is lets not let Prehistoric Fiction be pigeonholed or stereotyped, but be more thoughtful and even fact-based (and that requires actual research; something that authors I've seen here are willing to do).

Anyone can make up a story, complete with made-up facts. I imagine though that many people would prefer that PF have a basis in truth - that makes it more real. PF can and should be more than just modern day type soap operas (bickering, bickering, bickering) with a mammoth thrown in, which has been one of my criticisms of it.


message 12: by J. (new)

J. Layden | 22 comments I agree. I also think that there is no reason why we can't have heavy political intrigue and plot twists just like fantasy and sci-fi, while still being accurate. We can also potray the sophistication and alieness of prehistoric cultures. Brightly painted bark clothing, exotic weapons, little known extinct creatures, exotic practices that are foreign to us now and every bit as fascinating as that of vulcans and elves.


message 13: by Ishtar (new)

Ishtar Watson (emberofanewworld) | 97 comments J. wrote: "I agree. I also think that there is no reason why we can't have heavy political intrigue and plot twists just like fantasy and sci-fi, while still being accurate. We can also potray the sophisticat..."


That's something we need more of. All too often I see parallels of thinking when the culture and mindset of prehistoric people likely differed.


message 14: by Simon (new)

Simon (simontownley) | 15 comments I use the prehistoric era in my books to write about issues in our world - but to condense them down. For example, I have a novel with a tribe threatened by climate change, and there are two distinct ways of approaching the problem - attack your neighbours and take their resources or co-operate with them and share resources / technology. Which equates to hawks and doves. It's a way of exploring how we should tackle problems today, by showing how a small group of people in prehistoric times tackled them.
Anyhow, there is a prehistoric section on Amazon, but only if you go into the children's fiction area. I have my series listed in there, though it's not children's fiction really. My series could be seen as young adult, simply because the protagonist is a young man / teenager. The relevant listing is here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/bestselle...


message 15: by Ishtar (new)

Ishtar Watson (emberofanewworld) | 97 comments Simon wrote: "I use the prehistoric era in my books to write about issues in our world - but to condense them down. For example, I have a novel with a tribe threatened by climate change, and there are two distin..."

I've been wondering for a while now if my book counts as Young Adult. My two main protagonists are in their late teens, but there are some significantly adult components to the book. Being prehistoric, there are occasions when violent events occur. I guess that's the main reason I've never listed my book is YA =/

As for your idea of reducing modern complex issues to more simplified prehistoric issues, that is probably the best way to go. I stick with general concepts of morality, problem solving, and critical thinking hoping it will stick lol


message 16: by Simon (new)

Simon (simontownley) | 15 comments I do list my books as YA, because the protagonist is a teenager. But the books are definitely more aimed at adult. There is violence, (though probably not as much as in Harry Potter / Star Wars / Hunger Games etc etc), but also more 'adult' themes such as how should we run the world, what's the right way to treat each other. These are relevant for all ages really. I do think it's worth considering that amazon prehistoric category in childrens as it has definitely brought me book sales. Not massive, but some.


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