Posts Tagged ‘fiction’

genre-grime

Reading the untitled book I mentioned in my last post, the question of Niche came up. This is a very valid question, but in the world of fiction writing, niche has another name: Genre.

Don’t go running away now, it isn’t that scary. Really!

If nothing else, one thing I have learned is that genre is so, so, so important. Why? Forget being told that it means publishers know what your book is about, or that book sellers know what shelf to put it on. Though that may be true, without genre you won’t get published!

This is my belief. I have founded it on this: Genre keeps you on track.

You are writing a crime? Then where is the crime? The detective?

Romance? Then you need to inject some lurrrvee.

Thriller? Then why are you sitting laughing at your characters latest antics?

When writing with genre in mind, your characters end up doing the right things. When you get stuck, your genre can give you some clues as to where to go next.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t change your mind. That thriller can become a comedy. and the romance can become crime, and you can even write in two genres at once! The important thing is that you know what your book is about and what book shelf it will be sold from.

So before you begin, forget everything else. Think Genre!

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Monday Morning Minis II

(Photo credit: bornazombie)

 

So, week one of me trying to become a positively productive writer has been and gone and we are on Monday again. Today, I will have to review goals for the week, which also means looking at what I achieved – or not – over the past seven days.

 

I feel that, on the whole, I succeeded, but time will tell. My biggest problem at the moment is keeping on with the Novel, now that I feel I have started too early on in the story. I also think the whole premise is wrong. The advice ‘Don’t get it right, get it written’ is my mantra as I push through this tough part.

 

The other question I asked myself is: When to stop?

 

I have daily to-do’s. If I foresee a busy day ahead in the week, I will try and do more on another day. But if my week is pretty empty as far as other commitments go, when do I stop? This will be a case of trial and error I guess.

 

I like a tidy house. I don’t have one at the moment, I have been writing a lot. This is a good thing, but I am very stressed at the fact that my house is a mess. Then I re-read this, and I will most definitely be using some of her tips. Again, it will be trial and error.

 

There are no hard and fast rules in life, but we all get through it, one day at a time.

What works for you?

After a recent rejection of a short story, I put it to my peers for review and critique. I learned a lot.

 

It wasn’t clear what the problem was, or who it was that had the problem. As writers of fiction, we know that conflict is what makes a story, and resolution of conflict is what keeps the reader happy. Although in my mind there was conflict, it wasn’t clear to the reader.

 

Everyone has a problem of sorts. It may be big, or it may be small. But it is essential to story. It could be anything.

 

So I sat with my story, picked who was going to have the problem, wrote what the problem was and thought how it may be solved. I may still have got it wrong. But I have learned something. And I will learn more.

 

So, next time you are stuck, and your story feels flat, sit your character down and ask: What’s Your Problem?