I like trying new things, especially new writing projects. This is a relatively recent development. When I first started writing, I knew what I should write (always write what you know or are most familiar with goes the common wisdom), so I always tried to force my stories into the Fantasy genre.
As it turns out, that was a mistake. I have since learned that some characters and/or stories fit a certain genre (say Fantasy) and some do not. Sure, I could force them into the genre by trying to twist it/them, but why bother? If it’s a good story, does it really matter if it’s Fantasy or not?
This realization came while I was doing my 30-in-30 self challenge. For those of you not familiar with it, I challenged myself to write 30 short stories in 30 days. By the time I was done, I had written Science Fiction, Fantasy, Adventure (both YA and adult), horror and a few others. In other words, I wrote stories that I never thought I could write.
Then in May, I had a great YA/Juvenile Reader story idea. This time it wasn’t Science Fiction or Fantasy. It was a mystery. Again, another story I never thought I would write. I pitched the idea to my kids (my target audience) and they told me to write it. 45 days later, the story was ready for revision. Now that I’ve completed the first round of edits, I think it’s the strongest story I’ve written to date. Not bad for something I never thought I could write.
It will be making the rounds to publishers in September. I think it’s good enough.
Does that mean that I will abandon Fantasy? Heck no! I’m still doing the rewrite of my Fantasy novel and I’m thrilled with how it’s shaping up. I want a minimum of four chapters complete before ConVersion so I can begin pitching it to publishers.
What it does mean is I’m not so afraid to try something new. In fact, it’s safe to say that I welcome the challenge. I have a great idea for a Science Fiction/Humor series that I think could be hilarious. I’ve long been a fan of Robert Aspirin, Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams. Hopefully I can write something that might appeal to their fans. I think that since I enjoy those types of stories I can pull it off.
Maybe the stretching of my writing muscles will benefit all my projects in the long run. I won’t know until I try. What about you?
I finished my edits for my YA/Juvenile Reader book and I have two First Readers lined up. Neither of them will be around until mid to the end of August so that story will get a bit of a rest. While it’s resting, I’ve got to think of a good title.
I’m working (albeit slowly) on the rewrite of my Fantasy novel. I’m halfway through the first chapter rewrite and I’ve already got one of the nastiest villains you would never want to cross. It’s also introduced a new character who will make things much tougher (and more plausible) for my protagonists. I can’t wait to see how it turns out.