June 19, 2007

Too Many Childfree Books?

I’ve spent the last week emailing and writing literary agents pitching my book on childfree couples. In most cases, agents send a form letter, declining. However, a recent rejection email I received from a literary agent in New York read:

"There seems to be a lot of books on this topic for the market."
I thought…What? She had not yet requested my proposal, which identified less than 10 comparative books which had been published in the last 10 years. In fact, when I did a search on amazon.com, I found over 20,000 serious nonfiction books targeted to parents and less than twenty such titles targeting childfree/childless by choice couples. Perhaps she didn’t know how many of us are out here.

Editors at American Demographic magazine dubbed the childless by choice the "Missed Market" along with Gays, Lesbians, Bi and Transgendered. When I did a search on GLBT books, I found over 300 recently published books targeting this market, including at least three on gay tantric sex, which I thought was pretty esoteric subject.

Are we overexposed as a demographic? Are there too many books out there for the childfree in partnerships? You tell me.

My favorite book on the childfree is Why Don't You Have Kids?: Living a Full Life Without Parenthood by Leslie Layfayette. Unfortunately, it’s out of print, but you can still get used copies through the above link at Amazon.com. The reason I’m writing my book is that I could not find another, more current book, that read like this 80s classic.

Perhaps my book’s not sexy enough. Maybe I should write a childfree tantric sex book.

Yes, perfect!

I’ll call it Tantric: Uninterrupted.

Flickr photo by escruiba (cc).

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Anonymous said...

LauraS - OMG, I am LOL! Like that book title...something edgy, with humor. I know you will perservere. You've come so far on this journey. We all want to read that book, so don't give up. Can't wait for the film documentary as well. I have not seen a lot done on this TINY genre on the TV, unless you count our often negative portrayals in the popular shows.

The 10 titles in this childfree genre have been done within the last 10 years, roughly. That's one per year. So, I figure yours is next. Our numbers are increasing among some demographics, but alas, as the readers of this blog know, overall world population is doing quite well despite our best efforts.

I think the book Baby Not On Board was particularly refreshing find, as it was in-offensive humor with a heavy dose of cartoon pictures. Even parents would laugh at the comparisons.

I will put it out there for you.

If anyone can help, please pass your suggestions along to Laura via her main website, listed in her Blogger Profile.

Just click on her name under Contributing Editor in the sidebar.

Addy said...

That is my thinking, there are not ENOUGH! If she knows where all of the others are please do point me to them! Good luck with your book.

bearlovin said...

I am a total childfree book junkie. I have been thinking about the need for a childfree couples book for a long time. In fact I was just talking to hubby about it last night. I get SO sick of people characterising the childfree as "single and childless" and characterising marriage using terms like "tying" and "ball and chain" when that REALLY only applies married couples WITH CHILDREN! I think married couples without kids are the happiest people around, on average. You are so right that married childfree folks are underrepresented in books and the media. This is amazing to me because advertisers should realise we are a very lucrative market with all this disposable income! It would be great to see a childfree couples book that picks up on and modernises some rather feminist points forgotten since the 70s, that motherhood often makes women less attractive to their husbands/partners (see The Baby Trap by Ellen Peck) and that motherhood is inherently oppressive to women (see The Dialectic of Sex by Shulamith Firestone).

Childfree Chick said...

I have been looking for CF books and have come to find that I have read almost ALL of them already. Many are out of print though. It really sucks.

This woman is severely misinformed about the amount of CF books currently available to the masses.

CFT said...

I have read 3 this past month and NONE seem to cover it all.

The Childless Revolution was crap.
Beyond Motherhood is ok.
Childfree and Loving It is coming closer.


Miss Kris Dove said...

WTF? There are barely any CF books out there, and many of those are either out of print or have to be ordered from specialist sites like Amazon, you can't just pick them up in an average bookstore! I'd also like to see more childfree fiction with female characters I can relate to.

Anonymous said...

Hey, no swearing!!! Seriously though thanks for the comment. I do want to read Laura's book. In the meantime, let's get bloggy with it.