Yesterday I made up a new list of possible writing projects. This time I broke them into genres. It turns out that two are paranormal romance, three are contemporary romantic suspense, three are sci-fi romance, two are YA fantasy, one is YA sci-fi, one is hardboiled crime/dark fantasy, one is urban fantasy, and two are horror with other elements added. As you can see, they don’t exactly go together. I did this so I could take a look at the bigger picture of what I was writing (or planned to write). It was actually eye-opening. I was surprised to see so much science fiction. I know I incorporate a lot of science fiction into my writing, but I didn’t realize I had so many future stories that revolved around that particular genre.
Most readers don’t break genres down quite to the level that I do. And they shouldn’t. Genres are created so bookstores know where to shelve books. These days the designation isn’t nearly as important, especially if you’re writing mainly e-books. Readers only really care about a good story. I think writers could call their books, Pumpkin Fiction and it wouldn’t matter as long as the story was solid. 😉 Again, that’s as it should be. But for a writer, it’s important to know what type of book you’re trying to create. It keeps you on track when you’re writing. Not that other things might not creep into a story. They do–at least for me. But it helps to know what type of story you’re trying to tell (ie genre, theme, subject, etc.).
I’m looking closely at my genres because I don’t want to confuse readers. At the same time, there are stories that I want to tell. Does designating a genre matter to you? Do you buy based on author name or subject matter? Both? I’m genuinely curious.