Why Defining Your Writing Genre Clearly is Vital

As you develop an author brand, and find the right audience for your work, perhaps nothing is more important than clearly defining your writing genre.

When you see tonality confusion in a manuscript, it’s frustrating. When you can’t comprehend how a very definitive Western element snuck it’s way into a Renaissance Horror, or a Mystery suddenly unfolds without any reasoning, it violates the rules of the genre you seemed to be defining for your readers. 

That’s not to say mash-ups are not permissible. Oftentimes, blending genres can be an amazingly fresh perspective to create a new trend in the publishing world. Rather, it’s vital that if you’re crossing genres, there has to be that clarification within your manuscript to set expectations.

In fact, that can be a key selling point. However, if you want to cater to fans of a particular genre, it will be important that any diversions are set up within your scenes and description.

 If you are loyal to one genre, establish that firmly. By doing so, you can begin to gain loyalists that will gladly follow you as a lover of the genre you are so deeply immersed in as a writer.

 If you plan to move around, it will be a challenge in this current market. However, with careful planning and finding the right publisher (Which could be you, by the way), but it may be finding an agent who has a love of multiple genres and wants the challenge. Make no mistake; it will be a challenge.

Whereas if you create a book series that bends genres, but is consistent in that genre mashing from start to finish, you’ll find it much easier to find than hopping about like a writer who cannot refine their focus.

This week also looked at finding your target demographic, which is closely tied to genre choice, and I did a personal check in on my writing progress for the “chop-shop draft” of Current, my first novel as I prepare for the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writer’s Gold Conference.

Leave a comment below about your genre choices, if you feel so inclined. I always love discussions on writing on Twitter. Reach me @ThomasAFowler and use the hash-tag #WritersConquest. Thanks for stopping by; kick some ass and be proud of what you do.


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