What Genre Are You? #amwriting #writing #writerslife


Like I said  in “All I Ask“, I’m answering questions I receive from time to time…this is question #2.

Well, Felicia from Nesie’s Place beat me to the punch with a question I had planned on tackling next month on a #WriterWednesdays but she’s quick on the draw like that and I like it! Always full of great insight, I encourage you to check out her blog here and while you’re at it, you should pick up one of her three books. Yes, I said THREE books!

There is no time like the present…

What Genre Am I?”

I already know that the closest genres to my writing are Romance and Women’s Fiction but after a little digging, I’m still not sure into which my writing would fit. Would it be Women’s Fiction with heavy dose of Romance for added flavor?

We all know what Romance is but do we know how it differs from Women’s Fiction?

“A romance novel focuses entirely and completely on the romantic relationship and guarantees a happy ending for the heroine and hero. Women’s fiction focuses on a woman’s journey, wherever that may take her and whatever that may encompass. Though usually emotionally satisfying, a happy ending is not an expectation…The confusion between women’s fiction and pure romance sometimes occurs because the above elements of romance and a happy ending may also appear in women’s fiction. Yet, neither is a requirement in that genre.” – Writer’s Digest
“The Rules of Romance Novels are clear. The narrative must revolve 100% around the two characters involved—the Hero and his heroine (the H/h) and it must always (always always always) end happily….it must be About The Romance, keep all other elements as secondary, and it must end on a happy note with a little angst thrown in for good measure and satisfied fans. “Women’s fiction” is a much broader category with a single rule: a woman’s experience is at the heart and soul of the narrative. This woman can fall in and out of love, she can cheat or get cheated on…she can be young or old or in-between and it could also be set just about anywhere or any time…” – Writer’s Digest

It’s clear that my “Living to Die” novella falls into the “Women’s fiction” category with no fuss and no muss. But my novella wasn’t a creative piece I had planned on so it doesn’t count. It just developed organically during the A to Z Challenge because of something I was experiencing at the time.

But as for the stories closer to my heart and always on my mind, the ones I have planned for my characters, only time will tell where those will fit. Writing realistic and flawed characters (who sometimes have no regrets about those flaws)…Characters who could be living next door to you…A little cliffhanger or two…Issues of “diversity” sprinkled…That’s more my style…

But what about stories that provide the male protagonist perspective like Tyler? Would that still considered as “Women’s fiction”?

If you know the answer, feel free to tell me.

In the meantime, I’m going to follow the advice that someone gave me recently:

Stop thinking about it, write your story and figure out the genre later.

All Rights Reserved ©2017 Marquessa Matthews





12 thoughts on “What Genre Are You? #amwriting #writing #writerslife

  1. I did what? Am I starting trouble again? I’ll head over to the corner and sit quietly… after I finish! 😉

    Don’t even get me started on the Romance genre – I’d shut down WordPress with that rant. 😉 But I’m still sure to ruffle more than a few feathers – #sorrynotsorry – but genres are such a blurred mess, it’s nearly impossible some days to take them seriously.

    Between authors purposely mislabeling their work to garner a higher ranking, and Amazon and their voodoo algorithms, genre book selections can be like Forrest Gump’s box of chocolates – you never know what you’re gonna get.

    I purchased a book last year listed as Christian fiction. I’m pretty sure I went back and checked the genre no less than three times because this book had more sex than an XXX-porn flick. Seriously?

    However, the best example is my own first book. In the Best Interest of the Child was listed as Women’s Fictions, Psychological, Romance… in that order. I was thrilled when the book reached #2 – until I read the list heading – Psychological NONFICTION! Wait, WHAT? I called Amazon twice and still haven’t received a straight answer, nor did they remove the book from the list. I had to remove the book from a genre I never put it in.

    As for your work, I believe Women’s Fiction would still work even if a male POV was included. The story is about the woman and everything is in relation to her, including his POV. If that’s not the case, I’d go with Literary Fiction. And yes, you and I are old school and were taught that genre included only classics and formal writings, but I dare you to browse it on any online retailer without making the Homer Simpson face! 😉

    Many thanks for the mention! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Blurry seems to be an understatement. And why does Amazon choose the category for you? Isn’t that your choice when you self-publish with them? I don’t get that part. And its always a pleasure to mention you Boo!😆


  2. This is interesting. I don’t know how I’d classify myself either. I am all about the happy ending but I can’t imagine anything I’ve written with one of those typical romance novel book covers. (Know the ones I mean??) But… I agree… write now, figure this out later. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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