Fiction is non-factual writing and is produced as a story in the form of a novel. There are many genres of novels and the aim of the many writers who publish is to produce the best-selling novels. Not only will they receive the vast royalties but it will enhance their reputation as writers plus produce possible spin offs, such as television and film productions.
There have been examples of writers producing novels through the ages, but it wasn’t until the Victorian era that it became the leading writing genre. During this period Charles Dickens emerged mixing great story telling whilst highlighting the major social and political issues that were occurring in industrialised London. This was certainly the case with the publication of “Oliver Twist” and he retained this style with “A Christmas Carol” and “Great Expectations”.
It was during this period that the Bronte sisters, Charlotte, Emily and Anne were writing their masterpieces which included “Wuthering Heights”, “Jayne Eyre” and “Tenant of Wildfell Hall”. With the Bronte sisters concentrating their writings around the Yorkshire area, Thomas Hardy was doing the same thing down in Dorset. Concentrating on the social and economic issues of a rural area, many of his novels concentrated on tragic characters and their journey through the semi-fictional region of Wessex.
The 20th century saw a great increase in the numbers of novelists. Agatha Christie was a crime novelist writing 66 detective novels and she is currently the best-selling novelist of all times selling over 2 billion copies. Her most successful novel “And Then There were None” sold over 100 million copies making it the best-selling mystery ever. Her play the “the mousetrap’ opened at the Ambassadors Theatre in 1952 and is still running today after 25,000 performances. It is interesting to note that two of the most successful authors of all time specialise in children’s books. Enid Blyton has been amongst the world’s best sellers since the 1930’s. Among her successful creations were “Noddy”,” The Famous Five” and “The Secret Seven”. She has sold an estimated 600 million books.
In recent times the literary world has been rocked by the success of JK Rowling and her Harry Potter series. The books have sold over 400 million copies and have become the best-selling book series in history. The Harry Potter books have been the basis for a series of films that have experienced incredible success and the books are passionately read by many adults as well as children. Stephen King has been the leading author in horror fiction. He has published 54 novels selling more than 350 million copies. Much of his work has been turned into television series, feature films and comic books.
Many authors who use characters who will appear in many separate novels with the books transcending into series. One of the most successful authors at doing this is Michael Connelly. This crime writer has used LA detective Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch and his relationship with his half-brother lawyer Michael “Micky” Haller in 20 separate novels. The 2003 to 2004 President of the Mystery Writers of America has achieved great success selling over 60 million books, with “The Lincoln Lawyer” proving to be a major success at the box office after it was turned into a film. There are many different genres of novels and writers tend to specialise in one particular area. The one thing that all novels have in common is that they ignite people’s imaginations, and this explains why they are so popular amongst the vast majority of readers.