Author Business, Genre Writing

Choosing Genre; What Works for You?

How do you know which genre to write in? By understanding what you enjoy reading.

If you like reading romance, that’s what you should write. But if you like reading science fiction, that’s what you should write. It’s okay to write in more than one genre – and plenty of authors do that.

However, whatever you write is what your readers will come to expect. You build a loyal following. So you don’t want to write sweet romance and then an erotica novel under the same name.

While as the author, you’re free to write whatever you want, you do want to keep your readers in mind. You can write what you enjoy reading and you can write what you care about, but you have to keep in mind that just like anything else, publishing is a job.

You want to pay attention to what’s selling in the market. So look at what’s selling well on Kindle. The funny thing about what sells and what doesn’t is that it comes in cycles.

Then everyone jumps on that bandwagon, the market gets too many of the same thing and suddenly you can’t give away another book in that genre- much less sell it.

Vampire and werewolf stories were the rage. Now they’re not. Historicals once ruled – but now they don’t. However, they will cycle back around. So what you want to do is to pay attention to what’s going on in the market.

Never write what you can’t stand to write just because it’s selling. You’ll be miserable. Keep in mind that just because something has never been written before – doesn’t mean it can’t be. However, you do need to meet reader’s expectations. If you want to try something new, build an audience first and test it out on them before you put your whole career into something that may not work.

I write some romance, but it’s not my preferred genre. I work on it when I need a break from cozy mystery. I also write it under my own name, whereas my cozies are written as KP Stafford. I also love to read romantic suspense and sometimes write that genre as Ann Stafford. I don’t focus on that because it’s darker than my light and cozies. It’s hard for me to stay in the minds of dark characters for very long.

The bottom line is, if you want to build a real writing career by writing fiction, you need to choose the genre you love the most and put most of your focus in that genre.

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