Picking A Genre

I am often asked what genre I will write when it is time to carve out my debut novel. This question is asked at the beginning of every semester, and I never have a straight answer. My taste in literature extends beyond a single-niche interest: I enjoy writing historical fiction, literary fiction, and fantasy. Picking a genre, fortunately, is not something I must do today. I have a year left of school, and as a stay at home father, with two kids under two, my time is better put to use experimenting. One of my new year’s resolutions is to publish two short-form (flash fiction) pieces in a literary magazine. This way, my degree and career launch simultaneously.

Picking a genre is like picking a wife, you can only know which is the one, after dating a few different ideas.

The truth is I do not know, yet, the genre of my first novel. Picking a genre is like picking a wife, you can only really know which is the one, after dating a few different ideas. In keeping with the dating metaphor, if I had a type, it would be between literary and historical fiction—I read them the most. My influencers are the great modernist authors. As a result, my craft tends to lean existential.

Life Update: My last year of school began yesterday. I am taking 15 credit hours this semester; 12 credit hours are writing courses. I have a lot of work to do, but I am excited; I love school! Our little girl is a week old now, and our son won’t stop giving her kisses. Our home, right now, is so full of love, I can hardly believe the state of affairs our country is in; my wife and I are enjoying an other-worldly season of love.

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6 thoughts

      1. I recommend, The Elements of Style, by Strunk & White. It is the simplest go to style guide, and will be a blessing to revising your prose.

        No doubt, your father knows of it. All English majors use it as their ‘writing’ bible lol.

        Like

      2. On my 5th draft. I actually have read out some of my drafts out loud and was able to notice things that needed to be changed.

        There was a point in my 1st draft where my characters took over- I just let them, and wouldn’t have imagined some of the things that do happen in my book.

        Like

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