*I heard two genres mentioned by editors that currently seem to carry the kiss of death. They are "Memoirs" and anything with "Lit" attached (such as Chick-lit, Mom-lit, etc.)
* Keynote speaker, Bob Hostetler, dealt with the question, "What does the Lord require of you?" His answer--just three things: READ--PRAY--WRITE. For reading he recommended that we develop a reading plan for the year--reading a wide diversity of material. For prayer, he suggested praying God's Word back to Him and posting this note over our desk, "Have you prayed about this?" And under Writing he reminded us that talking about writing is not writing and learning to write is not writing. A quote: "People who want to be writers don't become writers. You write because you have to." Paul Collins.
* Stephanie Broene, fiction editor at Tyndale House, is looking for women's fiction, historical (19th century with strong romance), but no more fantasy for now.
* Sue Brower, fiction editor at Zondervan, is open to contemporary women's fiction, historical (little for now), a little romance; best known for suspense (but not looking for suspense authors right now). Fiction is growing at Zondervan, now doing 25 titles per year. Wants 80,000 words for a full-length novel.
* Luke Hinrichs, developmental editor at Bethany House, is open to adult fiction, contemporary and contemporary suspense, historical (19th century American), historical romance, a few supernatural thrillers. Story has to trump all. Does 120 books a year.
* All the fiction editors agreed that they were not interested if you present a book saying it's fiction about (an issue). Issues-orented fiction rarely works. The most important thing is that the book is well written. Look at the Best Seller list to see what's selling well.