07-21-18 Patricia Sargeant

Monday, September 12, 2011

Do you mix it up?

When I began my writing career I was going to write romances --- end of story. At that time, back in the late middle ages, there were historical romances, contemporary romances and series romances.
Nowadays, you go into the bookstore or look on line and the genres and sub genres are crossing over and blending.

Here's my genre-blending story.

At first I tried to write sweet contemporary romances but dead bodies kept showing up. I switched to writing romantic suspense. Still romance but different. The first book I sold? A romantic suspense. I was a writer of romantic suspense --- end of story. I should have known better.

My first publisher asked if I would be one of the authors to write a paranormal series. I had no desire to write paranormal but I was a new writer and this was my first publisher. I didn't want to rock the boat. I was looking at the Bible and one of the stories grabbed me. (One of only two times that a story basically sprang out of my brain and on to paper. The other time was also a paranormal romance.)

But I wasn't done yet.

I was out shopping with my sister-in-law and we found this absolutely amazing hand-carved bed. This was an exclusive furniture store and the bed was far too expensive for either of us. But for some reason I couldn't get this damn bed out of my mind. A few days later I had the beginning of what would be a cozy mystery with ghosts. The bed doesn't have a big part in the book, it was more the catalyst that introduced me to those characters. So now I'm writing paranormal, romantic mystery. Talk about mixing it up! The only thing I do know is they all have a happy ending and I'll keep writing them that way.

Do you blend your genres? Sub Genres? Or are you a Purist?


Sarah Raplee said...

I enjoyed your post, Elaine. My genre-blending story is similar to yours.

My first manuscript is a romantic suspense. The second is a paranormal romantic suspense. I've planned several other paranormal romantic suspense stories as well.

One day out of the blue, a book title popped into my head. Running with this gift from above, I brainstormed a YA romance with a Mad Scientist mother, accidental zombies,and aliens. I took a class about writing Steampunk stories and realized that genre would be a perfect fit for my YA. Kismet!

Guess I'm not through blending genres yer. :)

elizabethreinhardt said...

Love this post! My first book could be defined as a romance/Western/suspense/immigrant story. Yup. It's long buried, and that's definitely a good thing! I moved on to short contemporary romances because the Harlequin website gave such strict guidelines, and my first story was such a long, crazy mess!

I read Twilight and fell in LOVE, so I wrote two long, rambling vampire books and couldn't figure out why I didn't love them. I finally solved the mystery; loved the age of my characters, didn't have any real interest in making them vampires!

So finally, finally, I found the genre that felt best; contemporary YA romance! Woohoo! My first book, Double Clutch, is actually out for Kindle/Nook!

But who knows if that's the end of my genre blending...probably not!

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Elaine,
Great post, No I am not into genre blending at all. I have one published contemporary and the rest of my work is historical. Only wish I could do a little blending, it would almost certainly help with sales.



Judith Ashley said...

Hi Elaine,

I tend toward purist, I think - but I have an alternative spiritual element (not really a genre) that sets it apart from other romantic women's fiction.

Love the story about the bed! Inspiration does come from any where if we are open to it.

Diana Mcc. said...

Hi, Elaine,
I really enjoyed your post. I have one Historical that has a blended cast of characters, both normal and paranormal. Right now I am working on a straight Romantic suspense. I enjoy both!

Cara Gabriel said...

Completely - I'm currently writing what I call urban gothic fantasy with romantic elements...

Basically, I'm writing what I love to read!

ElaineCharton said...

Sure doesn't sound like it. You never know where the universe may take you.

ElaineCharton said...

Many authors have that buried first book. Myself included :) Some of it has popped up in other books.

ElaineCharton said...

Don't do it just because you think it's the thing to do. You may get away with it once, Maybe even twice, but eventually the reader will catch on.

ElaineCharton said...

One thing I've learned is to never be surprised where your inspiration comes from.:)

ElaineCharton said...

Diana and Cara-
I think most of us write what we enjoy reading.