Welcome to another, You Asked, the Experts Answer, segment. This week ‘s question is: What are the major literary genre’s?
In simple terms, genre is the type of story you’re writing and it’s best if you know where your story fits before you begin; however, sometimes it evolves as your storyline develops.
Knowing where your story belongs is important. Agents and editors look for books that fall within the genre they represent and choosing the right one is invaluable in marketing. But, deciding on a genre can be a bit confusing given the number of sub-genre‘s and the way they overlap.
Major Genre’s Include:
- Crime & Mystery
- Historical Fiction
- Science Fiction
Women’s Fiction is more commercial than literary. Usually written by women, for women, and the stories (about women) appeal to a large mainstream audience. You can find more about this genre at Find Me An Author.
Upmarket Fiction is a blend between literary and commercial fiction. Relatively new, this genre is growing in popularity, especially with agents. Check out Chuck Sambuchino’s, article on Upmarket Fiction at Writer’s Digest.
Sub-Genre’s: Too numerous to include in this post, I’ve provided you these resources for examples of the most popular sub-categories.
- Sub-genre Descriptions – Writer’s Digest
- Short Prose Genre’s – Writer’s Relief
- Sub-genre Definition – Book Genre
- The Book Industry Study Group
To date, there is no complete list of genre’s, but The Book Industry Study Group (BISG), working with publishers, has compiled the most comprehensive list.
To find out more including the most popular genre’s, free downloads, and access to the book genre finder, check these out.
- Now Novel outline the major genre’s in their post, Genres of writing: How to choose your story’s vehicle.
- Writer’s Digest offers a free genre description download.
- Writer’s Relief offers a whole series on Genre Defined.
- Book Genre is one of the best sites and offers the book genre finder with complete listings.
In the next segment of, You Asked, the Experts Answer, we’ll look at: How do I identify my books genre?