Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wizardry Writing Wednesday #2 - Good Gracious, what is Genre?

Wizard Lexiconi here with lesson #2 of Wizardry Writing Wednesdays.

Raise your wands if this picture makes your mouth water?

Yes? You like? Well, my young apprentices, how about ... this?


I can hear your collective gasps of delight and yearning right now. 

Do you have a favorite kind of dessert? Cakes? Cookies? Jello? or... Ice Cream. They are all good, aren't they? 

Well, now that I have your attention, let's talk about Genre. No, you can't eat it. You read it. 
Don't make me turn you into a frog
Okay, maybe you're unaware, unenlightened, unwilling to go get the dictionary and look up what genre means. (this will definitely result in you being turned into a frog. And frogs only get to eat flies.) But, since we are novices (look it up!!)at this, Wizard Lexiconi will show patience (this time) and explain what genre is. 

Genre is like the different desserts you enjoy: cake, ice cream, pies, ect..
In the same way that there are different kinds of delicious delights, there are different kinds of reading delights as well. Here are a few: historical, science fiction, fantasy, adventure, mystery, suspense, contemporary, romance, mainstream, horror, futuristic, time-travel, and this list goes on. Your local book store is divided by genres. Go take a look. Which section do you frequent the most in the library or bookstore?

This is most likely what you will want to start off writing.

One rule of thumb: Write what you know.

If you are a fantasy freak, then most likely you will want to start off writing fantasy. Do you love history? Perhaps you enjoy reading about America's early years, or past wars, or further back to cavemen time.

These are subcategories of basic genres. In the same manner as there are ice cream sundaes, ice cream sandwiches, ice cream cones, there are types of specific genres.

Such as mystery: there is cozy mystery, romantic mystery, mystery suspense and just mainstream books that have a mystery to be solved. Most of the Harry Potter books had a mystery in them as one of the subplots. (We'll get to plots and subplots later).

So, look at your list of books we made last week. What types of books most stand out that you like? What main genre are those books you enjoy? Are there several in that area? This might be your starting genre.

If you can pick one that you very much enjoy, I suggest that you get as many books that you can get your hands on in that genre. Learn how those books are written. What do you like and dislike?

These will be things you'll soon put into your own books.

We all have our favorites. I, for one, love to read about amphibians. They simply fascinate me.

Until next week, 
Let your imagination weave some wacky tales. 
Wiz. Lexiconi, Sr. Mage 1st class: Fabulist extraordinaire

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