Genre Matters so Choose Wisely

Genre matters for fiction writers because it places their book in front of the right audience. The irony of this title is the idea that someone who has written in five different fiction genres can help you choose the right “one.”

On Wednesday, I’ll be teaching a short class on this subject in my coaching group. You can check it out here.

Who Cares About Genre

It’s simple. The people you want to read your book care about genre.

People like:

  • Publishers
  • Librarians
  • Bookstore owners
  • Readers

That means, you, the author should also care about genre. Especially about knowing the genre you’re writing so you can deliver a satisfying story.

How To Choose A Genre

Okay, I mentioned that I’ve been published in five different genres. That clearly indicates that I didn’t take the short and straight path to determining one genre to write.

But I’ve learned from my mistakes. Even better, I know how to do research and discover the “right” answers from other sources.
Here’s what authors wiser than I and editors with more experience say about selecting a genre:

  • Write what you love as long as it is also fits the rest of these qualifiers
  • Write what you’re good at writing (for instance someone who dreads writing description might want to avoid description-heavy genres like fantasy, science fiction and historical)
  • Consider who you want to write for which means you understand your “message” to find your audience
  • Don’t write for money unless it’s all about business for you (and it is for some writers so no condemnation from me about that)
  • Don’t write what’s easiest because it will soon become boring (which is what happened to me and why I have written in multiple genres.

In the class, I’ll share the specific genres I’ve written for and offer some questions to consider if you’re struggling to settle on a genre.

I hope to see you there. Genre matters to readers. And what are writers without readers?

What do you think? Add to the discussion here.