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Old 10-13-2010, 02:46 PM   #1
basilsands
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Genre-Crossing/Mixing: do you?

I've always loved spy stories and military tales, epsionage, smart thrillers and historical fiction with a twinge of romance...the manly kind (but not porn. I hate reading porn scenes in books. I get all red faced and no one around me knows why). I also like the occasional well written literary novel that crosses into different territory.

'Ireland' by Frank Delaney is a good example I think of crossing history/legend with modern literature.

On the other hand, in the spirit of doing something different, I propose to create a new espionage thriller series that crosses into the realm of veterinary science and scifi and middle eastern historical fantasy fiction.

Its about a strikingly handsome Israeli Mossad agent named Basir Sandesman who falls in love with a former Hooters girl turned American CIA operative named Mia Moray whose partner is what appears to be a talking ferret named Colin who spends most of his time nestled warmly between her...in her sweater. Colin the ferret contains the entire MI-6 database in his brain via a computer chip he accidentally ingested in a bowl of ferret kibbels while undercover in an Al Qaeda pet shop sting. Unknown to Basir and Mia, Colin the ferret is actually Basir's time travelling cousin Leonard who went to the past and met a hard of hearing Genie who gave him two wishes. First Leonard said he wanted to find his true love, well actually he said "I want to meet and get close to Mi Amore" then for his second wish he wanted to look like Colin Farrel. The genie, being hard of hearing did his best. Now Leonard, now known as Colin Ferret, is jealous of the sparking romance between Basir and Mia but is afraid to shift back to his true identity because Mia will almost definitely not let him stay between her...in her sweater.


The working title is:
Ferret Whisperer #1: A Warm Jiggly Place With A Gun

Opening line:
"Colin did not like wonder-bras."

...let the action packed historically romantic scifi spy stuff begin!

How about you, do you write between multiple genres? How do you mix them and and does it work for your readers?
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Old 10-13-2010, 04:10 PM   #2
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I love mixing and matching

THE INVASION is SCiFi/Horror
THE AMULET and THE SIRENS are Crime/Dark Fantasy
THE VALLEY is Historical/Dark Fantasy
THE CHRONICLES OF SETON is Historical/Sword and Sorcery (as is my Watchers collection in paperback)

Others are straight genre pieces

ISLAND LIFE and CRUSTACEANS are creature features, THE ROAD HOLE BUNKER MYSTERY is straight crime, and CARNACKI: HEAVEN AND HELL traditional style ghost stories.

But you know what... they're ALL about the struggle of the dark against the light. The time and place, and the way it plays out is in some ways secondary to that. And when you're dealing with archetypes, there's only so many to go around, and it's not surprising that the same concepts of death and betrayal, love and loss, turn up wherever, and whenever, the story is placed.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:01 PM   #3
Cliff Ball
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I don't normally think about the genres I'm writing, because I usually lean to science fiction.

Out of Time is time travel/historical fiction
Don't Mess With Earth is alternate history/science fiction (or is that the same genre?)
The Usurper is sort of historical fiction/thriller
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:42 PM   #4
DavidRM
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The Summoning Fire is horror/urban fantasy (which isn't an uncommon mix).

Nasty, Brutish & Short Short, though, has some stories that mix-and-match:
"Down Hill" - Old West/Zombie apoc
"Crowfeeder" - traditional fantasy/military/horror

I've also written stories that could be called "assassin/urban fantasy" (is "assassin" a genre?) and a novel yet to be released that is YA/magical realism.

I have a hard time writing anything "straight". I'm always going to bend it somehow. Maybe even break it.

-David
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:27 PM   #5
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Not only do I write in multiple genres...I use multiple genres within a single book. My books are oftentimes described as having a genre identity crisis. This happens because my muse writes about whatever she wants :-)

Sandy
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Old 10-14-2010, 02:40 PM   #6
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I do like books that mix and match genres. With my next book, Footprints of a Dancer, I've mixed mystery, paranormal and Christian. My first two books are pretty much straight mystery. I feel I'm going out on a limb, but at the same time it feels right.
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Old 10-18-2010, 06:38 PM   #7
jaxx6166
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I always like a good mix. Summoning Fire will be in my TBR pile soon, here's to hoping it won't turn out like the last two I tried (yawn)

Anyway, I've written a YA/Urban Fantasy, Weird Western w/SF, and PA, and working on a steampunk historical....and of course, the good ol'Detective/Horror/UF
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Old 10-18-2010, 08:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaxx6166 View Post
I always like a good mix. Summoning Fire will be in my TBR pile soon, here's to hoping it won't turn out like the last two I tried (yawn)
You and me both.

However it turns out: Thanks for reading!

-David
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Old 10-19-2010, 05:40 PM   #9
basilsands
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Since so many say they write in multiple genres, if a publisher were to make you an offer, and they had to classify your book within a single genre to sell to stores, what genre would you market it as?

The reality of the publishing world is that the books pretty much have to be classified if they are going to get on the shelf of a brick & mortar. Usually with Top Level and one sub-genre.

For instance Thriller/Action-Adventure or Romance/Paranormal.

So how would the folks who replied in this conversation classify your own if you only had that limited option?
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Old 10-20-2010, 11:45 PM   #10
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It's tabled at the moment, but I recently finished a book that blends mystery, ghosts, Southern Gothic and suspense, and hopefully it's a bit literary as well.
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Old 10-21-2010, 01:30 AM   #11
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My whole literary career seems to be built on genre-mixing. For almost 20 years I've been mixing erotica with science fiction/fantasy, which used to be very odd and is now pretty commonplace. Now I'm writing paranormal romances, which are a combination of fantasy with romance. I've also mixed literary fiction, sports fiction, and fantasy...

I don't do it consciously -- it's not like I'm *trying* to make a pitch like they are in the opening scene of The Player, ("it's 'Out of Africa' meets 'Pretty Woman'..." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0epB5Z6ijpk) but I just can't seem to help using one genre to pry open the cliches of another.
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Old 10-21-2010, 09:32 PM   #12
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I'd probably be in the Fiction/SF&F shelf at B/N.
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Old 10-22-2010, 04:15 AM   #13
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If you had to choose one genre?

Quote:
Originally Posted by basilsands View Post
Since so many say they write in multiple genres, if a publisher were to make you an offer, and they had to classify your book within a single genre to sell to stores, what genre would you market it as?

The reality of the publishing world is that the books pretty much have to be classified if they are going to get on the shelf of a brick & mortar. Usually with Top Level and one sub-genre.

For instance Thriller/Action-Adventure or Romance/Paranormal.

So how would the folks who replied in this conversation classify your own if you only had that limited option?

In fact, the big bookstores like Barnes & Noble and the wholesalers like Baker & Taylor and Ingram require the publisher to put a BISAC code for genre onto the title, with one secondary code allowed. The BISAC code basically tells the bookstore what shelf to put the book on so that the stocking clerks don't have to try to actually figure it out from looking at the book.

For me, it would depend entirely on which publisher bought and marketed the book. I've written some stories that were sold into books that were marketed as Erotic Fiction, and others that were sold to science fiction/fantasy publishers, and so were marketed at Science Fiction. In fact, I've sold reprint rights to the SAME STORY to two different markets, where it's labeled as one genre by one publisher, and another genre by the other.

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Old 10-22-2010, 11:47 AM   #14
J. Dean
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My two novels are mostly fantasy (but not the typical Tolkien style) with a bit of scifi thrown in. My short stories are basically horror. Like I said on another site when talking about this, I'm more concerned with the story than the genre it fits.
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