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Old 10-01-2010, 05:43 AM   #55
neilmarr
neilmarr
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I'm afraid I'm one of the 'I don't read horror' brigade. My own wee house doesn't touch the genre. I found Jan's *Risen* when I was specifically scouting for books in that catagory to see if I should re-evaluate my prejudice of forty years' standing.

Jan's piece knocked my socks off because it was so grounded. The paranormal element crept into a fine running story with stealth, in full camouflage dress. I couldn't classify it as what I understood 'horror' to be.

So I'm now unsure about 'horror' being a valid catagory in itself. What reading *Risen* taught me is that it's a far too generalised genre and merits further qualification.

And this is a retail-imposed convenience that also leads books in other fixed catagories to be forced uncomfortably into a single available pigeonhole. Genre-defining restrictions are frustrating to the publisher and confusing and often misleading to the book browser.

I wonder if, during the discussion, somone might come up with a realistic sub-catagory for a 'horror' book that breaks the mold. Perhaps a two-word phrase that could be used by publishers, agents and indie authors to more accurately describe a work.

The current system of tagging a title in several established slots is broken. Had I been running *Risen* as a BeWrite Books title, I would have been forced, for instance, to tag it: horror/crime/lit-fic/mystery/zombies/romance/thriller/political corruption/police abuse/psychological/etc. Each alone would be off-target; together they help retailers and online searches, but confound the potential reader.

Happy reading. Neil
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