Barnes & Noble (and bookstores in general) has always been one of my top spots for finding inspiration. Nothing delights me more than perusing the shelves for the next life-changing novel! Aside from being a place of inspiration and just overall fun, your local bookstore can also prove to be a place of research. It may seem like an obvious tip, but you should focus your attention on reading books within the same genre as the one you are writing. Choose the kinds of books you think may be similar to yours or the type you wish to write. Identify the common themes and characteristics of the books in a specific genre. This will give you a sense of the general format of the stories currently popular in that area of the market. While this isn’t to say that you should tailor your novel to fit the exact layout of those on the shelves, it will give you a better idea of what genre your novel fits into the best. Literary agents, and furthermore, publishers, will usually buy a manuscript if it can be easily placed under a single genre because it will make them more marketable. So, make a trip to your local bookstore and peruse away!

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