Rick Riordan's famous young adult (YA) fiction series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, reached number one on The New York Times’ best-seller list and sold millions of copies worldwide. More than twenty-six million copies of Suzanne Collins’s Hunger Games trilogy is in print in the United States, and it’s movie adaptation already grossed $400 million in movie tickets sales. "Ship Breaker" by Paolo Bacigalupi received rave reviews and became a Michael L. Printz Award winner and a National Book Award finalist.
It turns out that despite the publishing industry's overall downturn, the science fiction/fantasy market share is growing faster than ever—the title output is increasing, and books from the genre are showing up on the USA Today, New York Times, and Publishers Weekly best-seller lists with ever-greater frequency, according to Simba Information, a media and publishing forecast firm.
Indeed the children's science fiction/fantasy segment of the total trade-book market is not only gaining share; it has tripled its growth rate.
The key to breaking into the booming young adult science fiction/fantasy market is to write a book that will grab a kid's attention. One of the biggest challenges for writers is to come up with plots and characters that are unique but at the same time familiar enough that children can relate to them.
Science fiction and fantasy stories require world-building based on both logic and real science, so I spent much time in research to enhance my series. But I’ve also kept in mind that children's stories need a quick pace.
This is, after all, a generation focused on their gizmos, communication avenues, and particular entertainments. Just look at their obsessions with smartphones, games, the Internet, and social networking. Kids will read if we cater to their lifestyles, interests, and concerns.