Coming Soon? Books for Boomers – A Brand New Genre or Category for Kindle Readers!

We had an interesting email message earlier this week from a very smart woman by the name of Claude Nougat (she’s an author, a painter, a economist and a blogger, and that’s her photo at the right), and I’m sure enough that she is on to something that I wanted to share some of her thoughts with you, our Kindle Nation readers.

It’s a straightforward idea: basically that it is time to create a new category of books that are likely to appeal to Baby Boomers, a term that generally refers to people born between 1946 and 1964. Here’s the basic pitch that she made when she started a GoodReads group on the subject:

When baby boomers reached their teens in the 1950s/1960s, the YA novel was born as a genre, dealing with coming-of-age issues. Now that baby boomers are 55+ and embarking on their second life, most of them in excellent health thanks to medical advances, it is time for writers to come up with Baby Boomer novels, or BB novels.

A BB novel deals with “coming-of-old-age issues”, and just like YA novels, it can be tragic, romantic, suspenseful, humorous, ironical but always compassionate.

Personally I suspect the category could be defined somewhat more broadly, without losing its appeal, to overlaps not only with various fiction genres but also with several nonfiction categories including biography and memoir, personal finance, and — dare I say it? — self-help.

As the BoomerCafe website noted in introducing an article by Ms. Nougat on the subject the other day, “baby boomers are the biggest, richest demographic in the world today.”

And just as important, for us here at KND, is the fact that boomers are the largest single “demographic” among our readers.

Naturally, few of us are interested in reading only the books that would make it onto a Boomer Books list. But it might be nice to have such listings at hand when we were looking for our next great read.

What do you think?

And what books would you like to see included? Please feel free to share your ideas in the comment area under our Coming Soon? Books for Boomers – A Brand New Genre or Category for Kindle Readers! post, and thanks!

We’ll see how much interest there is and see if we can help Claude Nougat take this idea to the next level.

And by the way, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention that part of what got her thinking about all this in the first place is that she recently published a boomer book of her own: the novel A Hook in the Sky, which is currently available on Kindle for the very attractive promotional price of just 99 cents.

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by Claude Nougat
4.6 stars – 5 Reviews

 

Maybe you’ll check it out. And maybe in the process we’ll all discover a new category of books we enjoy!

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64 Responses to Coming Soon? Books for Boomers – A Brand New Genre or Category for Kindle Readers!

  1. Jack Whalen March 1, 2013 at 12:05 pm #

    “The Courage to Surrender” is my memoir about the baby boomers who began drinking and using drugs in the sixties and haven’t stopped as they enter their sixties.

  2. Jack Whalen March 1, 2013 at 11:58 am #

    Not only are their millions of baby boomers but there is a large subset with alcohol and drug addictions. In 2010, the 4.4 number (below) jumped 5.4 percent. Coming-of-age baby boomers heralded a new era of illicit drug use in the United States – and aging members of this generation have maintained a higher rate of involvement with illicit drugs than the generation immediately preceding it. A study by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) that was published in the May 16, 2008, edition of Scientific American found that illicit drug use among people ages 50-59 increased from 2.7 percent in 2002 to 4.4 percent in 2005.

  3. Sheryl Fawcett December 21, 2012 at 8:31 am #

    I like the new baby-boomer category. My book, When Least Expected, is definitely not about senior citizens. The characters are active mature women living a full life and continuing to grow. They interract well with characters of at least two other generations. Baby-boomers are a huge demographic group to whom a few parts of our economy have found a way to successfully market. Books can be the next segment to do just that with the baby-boomer category.

  4. Marian D. Schwartz December 12, 2012 at 10:02 pm #

    I think this is a great idea! There is a tremendous potential audience of middle-aged and older readers who want to read books about characters with whom they can identify. I’m presently working on a book of short stories that span the years between 1950 and 1970. Fiction is a means through which we can look back at how we lived and what we did.

    • Claude Nougat December 30, 2012 at 9:34 am #

      Marian, thanks for commenting and yes, you’re right, the potential is enormous. But let me point out that boomer lit is not meant to be anything that appeals to an older audience. It is meant to focus on the transition from middle age to the last stage in life – so short stories that span the years between 1950 and 1970 (if they concern boomers) are most likely going to deal with coming of age issues. Remember, boomer lit is meant to deal with coming of old age!

  5. Pearl Barley December 12, 2012 at 12:14 pm #

    I like the idea of a genre for baby boomers. Can that include us Brits as well? It coincides with my writing (with much humour) about the issue we face at this ‘coming of age’period in our lives in the sequel to my book THE FAT BAG stuck between a rock cake & a hard plaice (as a middle-aged yo-yo dieter who still hasn’t managed to conquer her addiction) whereas now, while 50 may well be the new 30, it doesn’t matter a jot to the crick in the knee, the sprigs of nuisance grey hair that sprout in the wrong places, diminishing libido (why have sex when you can read a good book?) and the early onset of mild senility (looking for your glasses when you’re already wearing them. And we’re still expected to work till we’re 75!

    I think the baby boomer genre is a great idea and I can’t wait to see how it develops.

    • Claude Nougat December 30, 2012 at 9:31 am #

      Pearl, do join our Goodreads Group and see how the genre develops (link in case you missed it: http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre) And of course it’s open to Brits! Indeed to anyone in that age group! The idea is that this is a pendant to YA lit: just as YA focuses on coming of age stories, BB or boomer lit focuses on “coming of old age” – and it doesn’t need to be tragic, on the contrary, it can be quite humorous!

  6. Llynn December 11, 2012 at 9:18 pm #

    I’ve been thinking there should be a category like that also, but I think there should be fiction books included that represent the times of our lives. Books like ‘Boy’s Life’ by Robert McCallum ( a wonderful coming of age book set in the late 50’s) or books, both fiction and non-fiction about the sixties and seventies that correlate to the timeline of our lives. Memoirs, biographies and autobiographies of the heros, idols and events of our lives.
    Even re-releases of popular books we grew up with or read as teenagers or college students.
    I would love to see this become a category.

  7. Becky Lower December 10, 2012 at 7:35 pm #

    My baby boomer novel, Blame It On The Brontes, will be out this spring, through SoulMate Publishing. It’s about 3 sisters, all in their 40s, who have to move in together for a year. They’re not technically baby boomers, but they’re not dealing with the issues facing 20-somethings, either. Watch for it!

  8. Libby Fischer Hellmann December 10, 2012 at 7:19 pm #

    A look back at what shaped and defined the Baby Boomer generation is always a fascinating read, at least to me.

    Randy RIchardson’s CHEESELAND is such a novel — a richly textured story that focuses on what kids did when they wanted kicks back then.

    And of course, my SET THE NIGHT ON FIRE goes back, in part to the late Sixties, where I tried to make sense of the rebellion(s) we triggered in politics, culture, and just about everything else.

  9. Joseph Badal December 10, 2012 at 4:00 pm #

    It was encouraging to learn that Baby Boomer Lit is of interest to so many people.It makes sense, considering the high proportion of people who were born between 1946 and 1964. Baby Boomers, by definition, are people with enough age, experience, knowledge, and perspective to have something interesting to say. Baby Boomer characters in novels are more complete, more sophisticated, more complex, and perhaps more flawed (they’ve had more time to screw things up).
    My compliments to Claude Nougat for getting the BabyBoomer group going. I am thrilled to be a member.
    Joseph Badal

  10. Marilyn Adam December 10, 2012 at 12:17 pm #

    Romance for over sixty – we aren’t dead yet!!

  11. Micki Street December 10, 2012 at 8:16 am #

    Before the Daisies Grow – Capers of the Glamour Grans – born in the late 1940’s know that Life begins at 60! A humorous story of their adventure in Africa.

  12. Jan Hurst-Nicholson December 10, 2012 at 7:20 am #

    I believe the Baby Boomers are also the ‘sandwich generation’ in that they are still looking after their children, but also have the responsibility of their parents. I included this aspect in my humorous novel But Can You Drink The Water? http://amzn.to/a2V4Zy which explores the problems of emigration, and the difficulties of leaving behind aged parents. (A family of scousers leave Liverpool to settle in South Africa in the 1970s.)

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:31 am #

      Jan, I know you do and it’s such an interesting topic, so relevant to boomers! And I know you’re an active member of our Goodreads Group discussing BB novels…

  13. Susan Satangelo December 10, 2012 at 6:32 am #

    This is such a great idea. I write the Baby Boomer mysteries — 3 published so far. The first one,Retirement Can Be Murder, has been suggested for a television series by several national critics. The second one, Moving Can Be Murder, has received five-star reviews, and Book 3 in the series, Marriage Can be Murder, was selected as one of 2012’s Best Mysteries by Suspense magazine. I’m working on Book 4 now, which is about a high school reunion. The books follow the adventures of a typical boomer couple, Carol and Jim Andrews, as they travel along life’s rocky road toward their twilight years. With one body per book thrown in, just to keep things interesting. Check them out on Kindle.

  14. Jenny Gill December 10, 2012 at 4:49 am #

    My Southhill Saga series, fit the BB genre. Four of my five novels feature a heroine who is in her 50s, a real person dealing with real issues which we have all either faced, or know someone who has. I hate labels but I am technically a BB, so my books are written by a Boomer for Boomers. The websites I have been trying to promote them on up till now have featured mainly YA fantasy and horror so no wonder the response was underwhelming. There are so many of us out there – it would really be great if Amazon could create a BB category.

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:29 am #

      I’m sure Amazon will create a BB category if we all work on it and make everyone aware of our existence! It really IS a new genre and therefore an uphill fight (but we’ve got the numbers on our side: the boomer market is huge, some 75 million people in the US alone, and the marketers are only now waking up to the fact!) So it takes time and determination, but we’ll get there! That’s why I created this Goodreads Group a month ago and it’s already got 117 members and some 30 BB novels listed on its bookshelf. Come and visit, add your voice and energy and books!
      http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre

  15. Kathy Bobo December 9, 2012 at 4:07 pm #

    Sounds like a very good idea and the marketing possiblities are endless.

  16. Lynn Schneider December 9, 2012 at 3:48 pm #

    I agree! I have been looking for a way to get my books categorized such that other BBers would find them. Maybe not everyone wants to read about their own age group and readers have diverse tastes in their reading, but knowing there is a genre just for BB makes it easy for readers of this age to find BB Lit when they want it.

    I doubt there will be a problem with cheezy romances!

  17. Claude Nougat December 9, 2012 at 2:49 pm #

    Wonderful, I’m so happy to see the interest here and it is a strong confirmation that we’re onto something new and important! After all, the boomer market is huge, some 75 million people in total! Plus,it’s a moveable feat: remember we’re speaking of those born between 1946 and 1964 so that it’s growing by about 3.5 million every year.

    Hollywood has already caught on, first with the About Schmidt film back in 2002 (loosely based on Begley’s novel) and most recently with The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, based on Deborah Moggach’s delightful book about British retirees’ romping in India – and a sequel is already planned!

    I’m quite sure the publishing industry will also soon take note. And I totally agree with Steve that the BB label could apply to non-fiction as well. In the Goodreads Group I started (just 6 weeks ago and we’realready 89 members, and twice as many “friends”)it’s already been pointed out to me that the BB category should also apply to poetry and short stories. And I certainly agree with that too!

  18. des December 9, 2012 at 2:06 pm #

    good idea but I just hope it is not filled with cheezy romance novels, I prefer the historically based stories of human interest and behaviors. I am also not interested in “guru” non fiction types. Adventures of futuristic thought with interesting thought provoking characters based on historical or ancient cultures is of interest to me.These kinds of books are not easy to find but there are some out there

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:59 am #

      I don’t like cheezy romance novels anymore than you do, des! Indeed, my own book (A Hook in the Sky) is anything BUT cheezy!!

      But I think you’ll find plenty of stuff to your taste on our Goodreads Group booksheld, come take a look:
      http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre

      You’ll see, there are all kinds of sub-genres, precisely the way it is with YA lit…

  19. Nell Gavin December 9, 2012 at 11:48 am #

    Do you remember 8-track tapes? Jim Morrison? Cat Stevens? And…erm…The Plaster Casters? Were you holding up lighters in concerts in 1974? Did you ever wonder what was going on backstage while you did that, and who those men were, moving wires and lights around the stage? My novel, Hang On, takes you back – and backstage. It’s a “boomer book” for sure!

  20. Susan December 9, 2012 at 9:53 am #

    Love the idea of a Baby Boomer category! Just going through the entries above and seeing some of the suggestions made me happy. I’m going to look up some of those books right now! I would love to have a place to look for suggestions besides the usual.
    Great idea…hope you follow thru!

  21. Toni Wolf December 9, 2012 at 9:38 am #

    The main characters in my novels are Baby Boomers, too. Please include “Rock ‘n Roll Indians: A Spiritual Allegory” and “Spirit World: A Love Letter and Olive Branch to the American Indian.” As Baby Boomers grow older, such issues as spirituality and personal growth become ever more important. These are the themes for my novels.

  22. Len Edgerly December 9, 2012 at 9:31 am #

    I was born in 1950, and I find myself returning to books that formed me in earlier years. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig comes to mind, and The Count of Monte Cristo. I don’t find myself drawn to novels whose protagonists are my age. I just like terrific stories. A recent one I loved was History of a Pleasure Seeker by Richard Mason.

  23. Linda Pendleton December 9, 2012 at 2:14 am #

    My Catherine Winter,Private Investigator Series fits this “category.” Catherine Winter is a Southern California PI with more than 35 years in the business, and is in her sixties. As she has been known to say, she is not ready to retire, nor will she until she cannot “hit the bulls-eye with a .357 slug.”

    The novels are Shattered Lens, and Fractured Image, available in print and Kindle. And I am currently at work on the third book in the series.

    I’ve also published non-fiction that would fit into this “category.”

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:22 am #

      Do visit our Goodreads Group discussing BB novels, if you haven’t already! You can put your book on our Group Bookshelf, pitch it to us, put it up in the poll we run each month to select a BB novel to read, give your views about boomer literature and in general learn about fellow BB novelists!
      Link: http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre

      We’ll be happy to see you!

  24. Margaret Nation December 9, 2012 at 12:33 am #

    I would love to see the BB genre. I would like to see Mystery novels included. I don’t especially like thrillers, but mysteries are great.
    Also would like to see without a lot of romping sex themes. These do not add to a book.

  25. Jim Rodgers December 9, 2012 at 12:21 am #

    If you’d like some nonfiction by a Boomer written for Boomers, check out The Old Guy Rules, a book about a single dad whose wife left him with two kids to raise alone after running off with another man and taking their life savings with her. He was forced to come up with a list of rules for himself just to survive, and he tells his readers how he did it.

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:57 am #

      Jim, that sounds like a really interesting book and also obviously full of good advice. While our Goodreads Group was set up specifically to discuss BB fiction, I do think it would be interesting if you visited our group and set up a separate discussion topic to cover non-fiction! I’d really like that…and I can say so, I’m the moderator of the group, you’re most welcome!
      Link:
      http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre

  26. Elissa Ambrose December 8, 2012 at 11:59 pm #

    Finally! A genre for my novel, SEX, LIES & HOT TUBS. “Nineteen ninety-nine did not mark the end of the millennium, as some would have you believe. But it marked the end of an era for me. In September of 1999, I turned fifty.”

    And while we’re on the subject, why is it that print books for kids have such huge fonts while books for baby boomers have teeny ones? Another reason why we love the Kindle, right?

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:54 am #

      Elissa, font size control is yet another reason why we love our KIndle, I agree! And your book sounds like it ought to be sitting on the bookshelf of our group – the one set up in Goodreads to discuss BB novels, read them together and generally explore the limits of boomer literature. Do come and join us, list your book:
      http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre

  27. Alyne deWinter December 8, 2012 at 10:30 pm #

    As a late boomer myself I have thought that I write to people my own age. I prefer the pre-21st century for one thing. And a couple of my works in progress span the 1960s-1970s, another the 1980s. We certainly have a different view of life than this noughties generation.
    So, let’s go!

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:52 am #

      Agreed – we boomers do have our own view of life, naturally based on our experience. This is what boomer literature is about: the past, our past, informs and shapes the way we react to challenges in our lives, in particular those that face us now as we leave behind our middle years…But BB novels are not about young people back in the 1960s and 1970s: those would be classified as YA lit…

  28. Penelope Silvers December 8, 2012 at 9:39 pm #

    I say it is about time! I have a series of non-fiction, self-help books coming out for the Kindle targeted to women baby boomers. We boomers also want to read fiction that is not about women half our age.

    Excellent idea Ms. Nougat! I will hop on the baby boomer train right along with you. 😉

    • des December 9, 2012 at 2:11 pm #

      true but the self help books are really boring sorry but real life experiences and found information from these real life experiences are much more interesting than what is published as self help these days. I find the self help books while in good intention tend to send searching people away from themselves instead of teaching to remain solid and grounded in ourselves.

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:50 am #

      So glad you agree, Penelope, boomer literature has arrived! Check it out at our Goodreads Group set up to discuss BB novels: we’ve already got some 30 BB novels on our bookshelf!
      http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre

  29. Debby Mayabb December 8, 2012 at 8:49 pm #

    I am so excited to hear about the beginning of the BB genre. As part of the BB group of people in the world it is time for some books based on our generation and what we do, what we will do, and what will come in our future.

    Thank you to Ms. Claude Nougat for a wonderful idea.

  30. Ann December 8, 2012 at 7:46 pm #

    I totally agree with Ms Nougat. For some time, I’ve felt the same way myself. That’s why a few months back I started writing romances featuring heroines over 45.
    I even defined my reader on this page: http://www.miajasper.com/are-you-my-reader/
    Here’s a line from that page: You believe a woman can be as sexy at 50 or 60 as she can at 20 or 30
    Baby Boomer Women in particular have begun congregating on the internet. It’s nice to know others think as I do.

  31. Karen Angle December 8, 2012 at 7:44 pm #

    I think the BB idea is fantastic. I am a BB and have 2 Kindles, needless to say, I love to read and honestly, I think this is a fantastic idea to come up with the BB selections,

    Many thanks,
    Karen

  32. Casey Clifford December 8, 2012 at 7:38 pm #

    Books for Boomers? It’s what I write and mostly about whom I write. I’d love to see this genre be promoted on Amazon. I know it would make Amazon $$ and authors also. Great idea.

  33. Douglas December 8, 2012 at 7:17 pm #

    Please consider “The Memory Songbook” for the Babyboomer category. As we look forward, there is so much in the past that must be reckoned with. The Summer of Love being only the beginning.

    Classic Rock is such a big part of our “coming of age” story that we can’t help but wonder if one great song could not bring it all back. Song is memory. And the songs we remember most are often the songs we most lived.

  34. Linda Lou December 8, 2012 at 7:15 pm #

    Yes! This is a great idea. Please include my memoir, Bastard Husband: A Love Story, in this genre. It’s the story of how I came to Las Vegas by myself after a painful mid-life divorce and started doing stand-up comedy at age 46. I’m now 55, and getting better every day!

  35. Cassy Bailey December 8, 2012 at 7:14 pm #

    Great idea!!! The Jim Richards series by Bob Moats would be perfect for this classification. They show that life can begin at 60 and that love and adventure can still be ahead.

  36. Jerry Guarino December 8, 2012 at 6:48 pm #

    I believe my book, 50 Italian Pastries, qualifies as a boomer book (born 1953).. Many of my stories span the years from the 50s to today. check it out at http://cafestories.net or on Amazon at http://amzn.to/YbETwq

    Jerry Guarino

    • Claude Nougat December 13, 2012 at 3:36 am #

      Jerry, and anyone else reading this thread, should be aware that there’s a very active group in Goodreads discussing BB novels and where you can list your novels, pitch them and generally help your fellow Group members to explore boomer literature!
      http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/81261-baby-boomer-novels-a-new-genre

      Please come, we’ll be happy to see you and hear your views!

  37. Christa Polkinhorn December 8, 2012 at 6:44 pm #

    I generally dislike genre labels other than Fiction or Non-Fiction, for one thing because they are so limiting and secondly because they make it difficult for authors like me who write across genres to label books appropriately. However, a Baby Boomer genre does sound intriguing and, belonging to this age group, I would consider it. Thanks for the idea!