Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Graham Cracker

While chomping on a graham cracker a couple days ago, enjoying its slightly sweet, crunchy goodness, it occured to me how remarkable it was. Thinking about the cracker genre, I could not name another sweet cracker. Everything I tried to compare it to was in the cookie category. The graham cracker, amongst all the multitude of crackers, has something unique.

It reminded me of a presentation I attended at a conference last year where an editor said one of the key things that stands out to her in a query letter is if the story offers something that makes it different than other books out there in the same genre.

I would assume there is a fine line between the unique attribute and a gimmick, but if it's something that really enhances the story, then all the better for marketing purposes. Some examples that come to mind from best sellers are: vegetarian vampires, the story of the rape and murder of a young girl told from the dead victim's perspective, and World War II England seen from the perspective of Winston Churchill's dog.

My current story doesn't have a graham cracker angle. Does yours?


  1. When I read this title I thought for some reason that you were talking about Graham. Not so much the cracker and the friends of ours. I wondered what he had done to get his new moniker.

    About the cracker though. I think you're right. My graham cracker angle is my setting. I like to see peoples faces when I tell them which urban setting I picked. So fun. Now if I can just get it finished.

  2. Good thought. Since I have many WIP's (and nothing done) I have a few. I think my time travel is a bit graham crackery, not quite new, but different enough to hook ya.

  3. Dr. Horrible was really graham-crackery--a musical superhero story from the villain's point of view, where the villain wins.

    I want to say my current WiP has one, but it's hard to identify...maybe in the sense that it's about a secret hi-tech society descendant from Amerindians, that not only evaded annihilation, but grew stronger and polices the rest of humanity. Hmm...

  4. I'd say the graham cracker of my current WIP is the non-linear format.

    Graham, I love that you brought up Dr. Horrible. Love that show!