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Multi-genre (1 Viewer)

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theorphan

Senior Member
So sorry for any typos, i am on my tablet without my keyboard. i was wondering what everyone's opinion on a writer writing in multiple genres. I went to a conference over the summer and they said theyhighly recommend not writing in mutliple genres because ithurts your writing. So what is your opinion?
 

Vertigo

Senior Member
Do you mean multiple genres in one book or multiple genres across a bibliography?

In one book, it can be tricky and I suppose it could also make you less sellable in a market that is becoming increasingly specialized.

Just across all your writing, I call BS. If Stephen King can do it, then so can anyone else (I say this because I've read some King and I was not awed by it; the man's terribly overrated, though wildly creative). Also, look to Poul Anderson. Or... just look. You have to know how compartmentalize, or just work on one project at a time, but it's far from impossible to branch out your palette.
 

Bruno Spatola

Senior Member
Hmm, I don't really see how it could "hurt" your writing; it's never bad to try and tackle something different now and then. I personally think you should just write what you want to write without worrying about which genre it falls under. Writing outside of your comfort zone is a good challenge in my eyes.

Ridley Scott went from Alien to Blade Runner to Gladiator to Black Hawk Down to American Gangster, which are all hugely different films I think. He didn't just make Alien, Aliens, Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection, if you see what I mean.

I say go with the flow, and if it doesn't work out, at least you tried to do something different. I'm sure any good writer can knock out something half-decent in every genre out there.

If you meant combining genres on a single project . . . it depends. If you're trying to make a sci-fi/western hybrid, it could go bad and turn out like Cowboys VS Aliens, or it could turn out well and blend the two perfectly, like Serenity.
 
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moderan

WF Veterans
I would think it can help your writing to work in different genres. Genre specialization can make for a tight little box. Ask "Richard Bachman".
 

Robdemanc

Senior Member
Most of my projects have been different genres. At the moment I am writing a sci fi fantasy. Previously I wrote a very real contemporary drama. I am also trying to write a thriller. I think it helps to broaden your writing. But I would say trying to mix genres in one story would just lead to confusion for the reader unless it is handled well and the two genres compliment rather than contrast each other. Sci fi horror works well, Romance and supernatural has worked well.
 

Rob

Senior Member
So sorry for any typos, i am on my tablet without my keyboard. i was wondering what everyone's opinion on a writer writing in multiple genres. I went to a conference over the summer and they said theyhighly recommend not writing in mutliple genres because ithurts your writing. So what is your opinion?
Did you ask them at the conference what they meant, why or how they thought it could hurt your writing?

Ridley Scott went from Alien to Blade Runner to Gladiator to Black Hawk Down to American Gangster, which are all hugely different films I think. He didn't just make Alien, Aliens, Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection, if you see what I mean.
Yes, but he's a film director and producer, and those were movies, not novels. It doesn't really have much bearing on how writing in different genres might hurt your writing. People are often quick to draw a parallel between books and movies, but while they have some things in common, they're really quite different beasts, created differently, by people with different skill-sets, and work on the reader/viewer in different ways.
 
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C.M. Aaron

Senior Member
From a business perspective, it can better to stick to one genre. For a new writer, one key to success is to build a fan-base. One you become established, if you want to write a cross-over book, a story that appeals to more than one genre, then go for it as a way to branch out into other genres. C.M.
 

Bruno Spatola

Senior Member
Yes, but he's a film director and producer, and those were movies, not novels. It doesn't really have much bearing on how writing in different genres might hurt your writing. People are often quick to draw a parallel between books and movies, but while they have some things in common, they're really quite different beasts, created differently, by people with different skill-sets, and work on the reader/viewer in different ways.

I see what you're saying and I agree, but at no point did I compare or confuse books with films. I was just giving an example of someone who simply took on projects that he wanted to make regardless if their genre. He didn't go "Oh it's sci-fi, I've never done that before . . . maybe I should stick to historical works, I'm good at those", he just did it, that's the point I was making. I don't see how that shouldn't or wouldn't relate to an author in some way.

Directors and authors can sometimes have the same goal: to create interesting images that compliment the plot and absorb the reader/viewer.

My opinion, nothing more :p.
 
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Deyo

Senior Member
This is good to know. I have a story/novel in the works and It starts from a few different perspectives that eventually come together, Each perspective will offer a different genre, eventually coming together into the sci-fi genre. It will continue to be sci-fi from there on out, but I'm going to try and stick the genre with the characters, sounds pretty difficult when I put it that way...I guess it would be kind of like a sci-fi setting with character that would normally be in a mystery, thriller, or psychological. Sci-fi is awesome like that, allows for a lot of maneuverability while still keeping an attachment to reality, if done right, unlike fantasy which stray from the explainable..
 
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