Your Chosen Genre
Your Chosen Genre
Unless, or until, you are an established name in the world of writing like J.K Rowling, or Lynda La Plant with book sales in the millions, is it wise to stick to just one genre?
Many new writers and I include myself in this, want to write the next bestseller in the genre they fell in love with as avid readers and therefore feel comfortable with. In my own case, it is science fiction. While I wait for my next sci-fi novel to form in my mind, I’m happily exploring other genres.
I believe this is not only healthy but is also an excellent tool to improve or hone my own writing skills. Forcing myself to think a story through outside my own comfort zone, challenges me to explore not only different genres, but also to write in different styles.
My publisher set up an in-house site for all of its authors and a few outsides who had caught our chief editor’s eye, where we can post short stories, flash fiction, vignettes, excerpts from a forthcoming novel, etc. for discussion and constructive criticism.
Each month, one of us will place a challenge to write a story in whatever genre the challenger decrees.
Within this friendly group of writers, many genres are represented. We have writers whose favourites include Sci-Fi, YA, Horror, Children’s stories, Fantasy – Light and Dark, Steam Punk, Dystopian, Historical – you name it, we have it covered.
Writing in other genres is a necessary exercise. How else will you improve unless you experiment? Try it. You never know, you may find you have a talent for writing in a totally different style and genre beyond your favourite.
Above all, until the product of all your hard work ‘makes it’, keep on challenging yourself, keep on exploring and experimenting. That’s the only way you will one day write that bestseller.
If as a writer you’re completely honest with yourself no one merely writes for personal enjoyment.
In the end we all want to be read by others.
It’s good to know you, as Angie thinks you are a hell of a guy and an asset to the magazine. Being Angie’s Factotum (or developer as she likes to call me) I write mainly “code” :), but I can say I read most of your work and like most of what I read.
Do you really think it is a necessary exercise to write different genres? Can you not experiment within the genre you feel comfortable with?
Take it from me Bart it is.
Different genres require different approaches. Out of that comes different styles. If you are at all serious about your writing as I am, experimentation, expressing yourself through the use of different voices is totally necessary.
Glad you find some of my offerings to your liking.
As a matter of fact, I am all over the map when it comes to writing; working on several genres.
People should write about what they are passionate about and not try to be like somebody else. Great article!
Nice piece, Jack- It is always best if a writer writes based on the subject he or she is best at. Talking about ‘genre’. I thought ‘genre’ can be different from subject matter when it comes to writing and the particular style the writer prefers to fulfill the treatment of, again, that particular subject of his/her greatest passion. To my little knowledge, where literature is concerned, you are either a playwright, a poet or a novelist. You are either a novelist and your dwellings are in the area of writing novels in prose form either as Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Romance, Horror or what have you. As a writer, you are entitled to choose the genre you are most passionate about to treat your subject matter most adequately-Poetry, Playwright or as a Novelist. But some writers can be so gifted that they can use all three genres to the best fulfillment!