Saturday, September 17, 2011

What Genre Are You?


There are moments when the challenge is too great. You know what I mean? You are faced with a situation and you have no ready response, no action that is appropriate nor adequate.

Defeat is assured with no word to aid, no succor possible.

There is normal and then, a blink perhaps, and there it is, the challenge, the ugly black thing you have no weapon to fight against.

Not to make this sound dramatic or life-threatening, because that isn't at all what I mean. The challenge can be a small, almost innocent, wee sort of thing. A hiccup that disrupts the briefest of time, causes the smallest ripple. Or it can be the end. The challenge can be that final, that overwhelming.

My challenge came today, was a small challenge on the scale of such things, as far as challenges go. I was asked what genre I wrote.

Ah. And blank. Sweat under the the arms, the crease in the brow, the knowledge that no answer would come. A genre. Like asking, what color brown do you like better, as if there is a difference. Brown is brown, right?

I write. What genre, though? How to answer, how to proceed?

I accept defeat in this and as is my normal response, the challenge is tucked away and mostly ignore as I drive on, trying recapture my balance.

I have no idea what my genre is or have any clear mind as to what it should be in the future. Maybe I will settle, some shape will form around my writing career.

I hope not though because the feeling and thought of boundlessness, a writer with no borders and no expectations, that appeals to me. My fifty book quest is predicated on the notion that I don't have to choose, I can explore every genre and be just a writer.

Independents are fortunate in that way, in this time, in the new writing dynamic that is emerging. We can slide and bend and be- we can be writers. We can write fiction and fantasy and horror and humor and non fiction and true crime and we can take photographs and we can just revel in unfettered wonder at what imagination can be when not locked away under the key held by traditional publishes who need writers to conform, to identify as a genre.

Or maybe I'm full of orotund bullshit that resonates but ultimately signifies nothing.

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