Finding your NICHE as a writer...
When I started writing stories way back when I was child, I thought there were only a few kinds of books out there...picture books, chapter books, novels, and nonfiction. As I got olderr, I never stopped to consider the different genres available to writers. Thinking about my post today made me think about all the different ones I currently write in...picture books, early reader chapter books, historical fiction, young adult mystery, and young adult fantasy.
Some "experts" say writing in multiple genres doesn't allow a writer to become a master in any of them. I'm not sure I agree with them. I rather like challenging myself to mold my stories within the parameters of a particular genre. And I can honestly say I've never suffered from writer's block because I can just switch gears and hop off into another world of my own making to see what's going on there.
But if you are just starting out as a writer, you may not know yet what type of stories YOU want to write about yet. According to Wikimedia Commoms (www.commons.wikimedia.org), here is the breakdown of different classifications of story telling. Maybe this will help you decide what type of stories YOU would like to write one day...
Common genres: fiction
- Classic – fiction that has become part of an accepted literary canon, widely taught in schools
- Comic/Graphic Novel – scripted fiction told visually in artist drawn pictures, usually in panels and speech bubbles
- Crime/Detective – fiction about a committed crime, how the criminal gets caught, and the repercussions of the crime
- Fable – narration demonstrating a useful truth, especially in which animals speak as humans; legendary, supernatural tale
- Fairy tale – story about fairies or other magical creatures, usually for children
- Fanfiction – fiction written by a fan of, and featuring characters from, a particular TV series, movie, etc.
- Fantasy – fiction with strange or otherworldly settings or characters; fiction which invites suspension of reality
- Fiction narrative – literary works whose content is produced by the imagination and is not necessarily based on fact
- Fiction in verse – full-length novels with plot, subplot(s), theme(s), major and minor characters, in which the narrative is presented in verse form (usually free verse)
- Folklore – the songs, stories, myths, and proverbs of a people or "folk" as handed down by word of mouth
- Historical fiction – story with fictional characters and events in a historical setting
- Horror – fiction in which events evoke a feeling of dread and sometimes fear in both the characters and the reader
- Humor – Usually a fiction full of fun, fancy, and excitement, meant to entertain and sometimes cause intended laughter; but can be contained in all genres
- Legend – story, sometimes of a national or folk hero, that has a basis in fact but also includes imaginative material
- Magical Realism – story where magical or unreal elements play a natural part in an otherwise realistic environment
- Metafiction – also known as romantic irony in the context of Romantic works of literature, uses self-reference to draw attention to itself as a work of art, while exposing the "truth" of a story
- Mystery – this is fiction dealing with the solution of a crime or the unraveling of secrets
- Mythology – legend or traditional narrative, often based in part on historical events, that reveals human behavior and natural phenomena by its symbolism; often pertaining to the actions of the gods
- Mythopoeia – this is fiction where characters from religious mythology,traditional myths, folklores and history are recast into a re-imagined realm created by the author.
- Realistic fiction – story that is true to life
- Science fiction – story based on impact of actual, imagined, or potential science, usually set in the future or on other planets
- Short story – fiction of such brevity that it supports no subplots
- Suspense/Thriller – fiction about harm about to befall a person or group and the attempts made to evade the harm
- Tall tale – humorous story with blatant exaggerations, swaggering heroes who do the impossible with nonchalance
- Western – set in the American Old West frontier and typically set in the late eighteenth to late nineteenth century
Common genres: nonfiction
- Biography/Autobiography - Narrative of a person's life. A true story about a real person.
- Essay - A short literary composition that reflects the author's outlook or point.
- Narrative nonfiction - Factual information presented in a format which tells a story.
- Speech - Public address or discourse.
- Textbook - Authoritative and detailed factual description of a topic.
- Reference book - Dictionary, thesaurus, encyclopedia, almanac, atlas, etc.
Blurb: Addie comes from a long line of readers or "story catchers" as her family likes to call themselves. Every time Addie tries to catch a story on her own the wiggly words play tricks on her. She tries different ways to make those words sit still but it will take a little faith for Addie to become the next STORY CATCHER.
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