Wednesday 3 September 2014

The Artist Unleashed: HOW TO REFRAME A LITERARY GENRE – KARMA LIT, ANYONE? by Stephen Weinstock

The first piece of advice you read in Book Biz manuals is that a writer should choose a genre, learn all about that kind of book, and tailor their brilliantly inspired work accordingly.  Publishers organize decisions around these beloved genres, booksellers need them to put your book on an easy shelf, and readers won’t find you if Medical Thriller isn’t stamped on your forehead. I’m here to say:


I considered crafting this article as a practical guide to ...

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  1. Self -publishing really has given authors the chance to explore and create more genres. Not everything fits in a box. And even those of us with books in box wish we could stick them in more than one box so others might find them.

  2. Good point, Alex. The 'one size fits all' approach can be frustrating.

  3. I had one big concept in me too, and it turned into a four book series. Hey, it was enough for JK Rawling, right?

    1. I guess when people say, "Hey, what's the big idea?" we need to think about it. Thanks for your comment, Donna.

  4. This is a very interesting topic. I wonder if there's a parallel to be drawn to indie music with its proliferation of micro-genres?

    I've been doing my own thinking about genre because my debut novel isn't easily classifiable except as "literary fiction," which is in some ways kind of a useless label. I opted to invent a genre, but more to provoke questions than to start a movement, if that makes any sense. "Metaphysical romance? What's that?" "Well … "

  5. I love your analogy with indie music; it makes a lot of sense. I agree with you about literary fiction, which is a catch-all for a lot of kinds of books. Glad you're provoking questions!


“I'm using my art to comment on what I see. You don't have to agree with it.” ~John Mellencamp

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