Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Insecure Writer's Support Group: Switching Genres

Here we are at another Insecure Writer's Support Group, where we air out our collective writerly angst to the world!

Today my topic is switching genres. I've done it before, having written science fiction, fantasy, horror, action/adventure, and western. For my latest book I'm switching genres again.

This time, though, it's a bigger leap. The Last Hotel Room is set in contemporary Tangier and takes on contemporary issues. It isn't speculative fiction like so many of my works. A marketer would probably label it as "literary" although I don't think that's a term an author should use on oneself.

I'm about halfway through the first draft and it's an interesting experience writing about a place where I often visit and dealing with issues that touch me like the refugee crisis. It's also a challenge to write a novel without any gun fights, magic, or spaceships! Whether or not it will work as a novel is still in question. It's also unclear if my readers will follow me that far from my usual path.

That's OK, I'm still writing plenty of the other stuff in 2016!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That's cool you can write in so many genres. You certainly know Tangiers well enough. Hope no gun-toting aliens sneak into the story.

Ryan Carty said...

Seems like you have the writing grab bag of genres in your arsenal. For me, writing is like being a musician, you appreciate all the forms, all the styles, find a gem in each one. Being versatile is a great skill, and any reader who likes your style will follow just to see what amazing things you produce. Best of luck.

Melodie Campbell said...

My mentor used to call me a literary slut, because I kept writing in different genres! All in good fun. Nice to meet you!

Doreen McGettigan said...

Good topic! I have been writing nonfiction because that's the way life turned out but I have always wanted to write fiction. I wonder the same thing. Will my readers follow? All I can do is write what I need to write and hope. Go for it and good luck! Keep moving forward.

Mel Corbett said...

I don't think there's anything wrong with genre hopping, so long as you don't expect all of your readers to follow and the sales pages for the book make it clear what genre it is. I think what matters is that we write what captivates us or effects us emotionally and that emotion shows through to our writing.

Anyway, I also genre hop, but like you usually stick with spec fic. :-)

Looking for more from Sean McLachlan? He also hangs out on the Civil War Horror blog, where he focuses on Civil War and Wild West history.

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