Pick a genre, they say. Write what you know. Take a stand, grab your brand. Let people–readers–know what to expect.
Sounds like solid advice, but I’m having trouble following it. I’ve focused on contemporary romance the past couple of years, thinking that with the same excellence in writing, it would be easier to sell a romance novel than a fantasy. Quite simply, more romances are sold. More romance publishers are willing to take a chance on a new author. I spent awhile figuring out what my niche in romance would look like, and writing the novel that would fill that niche. It’s out on the agent prowl right now after several requests at ACFW conference in September.
But my fantasy worlds have not let go. They’re elbowing the contemporary romances, begging for attention. So a couple of months ago, I decided my next novel would be a YA fantasy, the idea for which has been percolating for several years on my brain’s back burner.
Then an opportunity came up to create proposals for some contemporary romances. Ideas flowed, and friends encouraged. So I spent a couple of weeks working these out, hoping to get the chance to write them.
Meanwhile, I’d begun asking for updates on some novels that have been out for awhile, and that resulted in a full manuscript being requested for my complete fantasy novel, Majai’s Fury. I realized that my skills have developed in the two years since that novel began making the rounds, so I’m taking a week to brush through it before sending it in.
Back and forth. Romance and fantasy. I think I could live like this. But would readers follow?