One of the greatest mistakes a fiction writer can make is not understanding the genre they are writing in. Most writers have a general idea of genre. Some are hands down obsessed with the nooks and crannies of it. However, only a handful of writers really get the tropes, conventions, and expectations built within any genre.
Genre is expectation. It’s the audience’s expectations of the writer. From front to back, the audience wants to know exactly what they’re getting into. That’s genre.
Since the last thing you want to do is ruin their audiences experience, let’s dig into how you can avoid it. Here are some ways to help you understand your genre.
I had been reading The Song of Susannah by Stephen King when my wife brought home two copies of the book Silence by Shusaku Endo from the library. She wanted to read them together and discuss. Though I generally love reading Stephen King, The Song of Susannah just wasn’t doing it for me (I still need to finish it). Silence pulled me in quickly. The prose flowed well, though some of the translation was sloppy, and the compelling, yet simple, story kept me engaged. So, it was goodbye, King, and hello, Endo. He explores many themes, but of all of them I’m only going to focus on the idea of Christian love and faith, and how the two could potentially be in conflict under certain circumstances.
It took me roughly a week and a half to finish Silence. Examining the literature from an English standpoint is difficult. I can only imagine what might be lost in translation, and frankly the translation by William Johnston was less than impressive. Either way, I’m only assuming that overall Endo’s subtext and themes come across fine within the English translation.
If you’d like another chance to get my short horror story collection Pocket Wilderness & Other Horrors on Amazon for FREE, well, you’re in luck.
On Cyber Monday, I’ll be running another sale and it will be FREE again for you to download to your Kindle.
A collection of four horror stories, Pocket Wilderness & Other Horrors tells the tale of men who must step outside their shell, face their fears, and find out who they really are. But no matter how hard they fight, can they survive the horrors that surround them?