The Woes of Choosing a Genre

Once upon a time, in the distant land of Australia, a young writer got an idea. That idea was to write a book, a book about assassins and one woman who accidentally got mixed in with them. The writer picked up her laptop with only one thing motivating her, the desire to write a story. Which was fine. The writer was happy, getting down her dark tale of misfortune peppered with her weird humour, all the while ignoring the publishing process. That could be handled later. But one day, something horrible happened. A friend asked the most dreaded question:

“What genre is it?”

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, writing is so much more involved than I initially thought. And todays topic of contemplation is genres.

When I started writing, I decided I would finish the book first, then choose a genre. Because I didn’t want to accidentally limit myself by deciding my book wasn’t fitting the genre I chose and be forced to change it when I didn’t want to. Well, now I face the issue of choosing a genre that fits my writing.

There are hundreds of genres, sub genres and genre combinations. Which means there are hundreds of options to look through and choose from.

And of course, my book likely falls into more than one genre. Which ones do I choose? How will that affect the readers my book brings in? It’s difficult enough to find a list of all the different genres that exist, let alone figure out which ones my book falls under.

With all the things I need to google, no wonder I’m so slow at writing.

 

~~Ari

😊

Advertisements

Writing a Book is More Involved than I Initially Believed

Having hit the halfway point of my first draft, I realised that I ought to be thinking about more than just my book. Although actually getting published is still a long way off, there are things I need to start organising right now. Because knowing me, if it doesn’t get done early, it’s not getting done at all.

For starters, I need to rethink my blog design. What I have right now was haphazardly chosen late one night when I decided to start blogging. I think it’s about time to revisit the settings. Speaking of which, I have little to no images to post alongside my blog posts, and knowing how visual enhancement can improve a post, I need to get some images asap. I don’t quite know what pictures to take, maybe some books or sketches, but all I know is that I want all my pictures to be my own.

Second point, I need to expand my social database beyond a blog. If i’m going to cross over from randomly writing a story to becoming a published author, simply writing on a blog every few weeks is not enough. I think a website is in order, maybe a Facebook page or Instagram. Furthermore, I need to decide whether I want to use my real last name or come up with a pseudo name to write under.

On to my actual book. Title and overall series title have already been decided upon, and I have a few ideas for a cover. But I need to begin researching how exactly I’m going to publish. Definitely self published initially. Yet, there’s more to it than simply deciding the route I want to take. I have to scout a path, get to know the way, research an optimal mode of transport and check out what I’m in for.

Ah, so much to do.  The idea of actually publishing is a little daunting, luckily I’ve got a good half a year minimum to psych myself up to it.

Any recommendations for a good website builder? And what do you reckon, pseudo name or real name?

~~ Ari

🙂

What did Ari get up to in July?

How is it August already? I could’ve sworn it was still June… Ah, never mind. A month has come and gone, and I’ve been busy writing my first book, as well as other oddities. So, I’ve put together a little roundup.

In July, I have:

  • Written about 7000 words (yes, I am a painfully slow writer)
  • Came up with a title for the sequel, still no ideas for book 3 though
  • Read at least 7 books
  • Improved my dreadful cooking skills
  • Successfully taken care of a house plant

 

I’ll be keeping up on updating any research or interesting points regarding my writing. I’ll post actual snippets from my book when I get closer to finishing it.

And I’ll post anything else interesting I come up with. Speaking of which, if anyone has any ideas of what I should post, I’d love to hear them.

~~Ari

🙂

Word Counts

I think I have an obsession with counting how many words I’ve written.

While I realise that how many words I put down on paper doesn’t matter that much so long as I tell the story well without bloating it with unnecessary scenes, I can’t help but frequently check how long my chapters are. That little word counter in the corner of a Word document is the equivalent of a clock during an exam for me. Which means I basically stare at it instead of actually writing. I turn off my internet, music and keep my phone well away from me, and yet I still get distracted.

If I could write as fast as I find ways to procrastinate, I would be done my first draft by now. Probably my second too.

But I must say, it is rather interesting researching word counts in famous books, especially since I’m not entirely sure how long mine should be. I read somewhere that publishers prefer books to be between 80000 and 100000 words, so I’ve been using those figures as a very rough guide, and have come to the conclusion that I would like my book to be around 1000000 words. It’s helpful to see physical copies of books and know how many words are in them. In this regard, the Harry Potter books have been a great help.

And then there’s the issue of my chapter word counts, because they are terribly inconsistent!

On average, one chapter is around 4000 words, yet I’ve had ones that were only 3000 and ones that were well over 7000. Basically, I jump around a fair bit. However, I’m trying to stick with shorter chapters, and any long ones are broken up into sections.

Shorter chapters, for me at least, tend to be more appealing, as I like to read an entire chapter in one go and books with long chapters make is terribly difficult to do so at times. At least breaking up longer chapters offers places where a reader can take a break without being in the middle of something important.

So while keeping a tab on my word count is important, I probably ought to stop doing it every couple hundred words.

~~ Ari

😊

Reorganising Character Info is Time Consuming

Today I decided that I was fed up with having all my character descriptions in one Word document and having to scroll through it all when looking for a particular character. Which I why I decided to reorganise everything into separate documents.

Who knew copying and pasting could take so long! I ended up spending hours on it. Not only were there character descriptions to sort, but also other little notes I made during writing that weren’t categorised. But at least now my life will be a little easier.

I also decided to do a bit of research on the differences between psychopaths and sociopaths in an attempt to diagnose a character. I still have a bit more work to do on that, but I did note down a few important parts:

Psychopath

  • Lacks conscience
  • No emotional attachments
  • Dishonest
  • Superficial charm, mimic feelings and emotions
  • Cool and calm, cold

Sociopath

  • Has conscience, but a skewed one. Weak.
  • Spontaneous, generally don’t plan criminal activities, haphazard, disorganised
  • Less calm, less organised demeanour. More agitated and nervous, emotional outbursts, hot headed
  • Can form emotional attachments
  • Less able to act, and will show what they feel

Both

  • Skewed moral compass
  • Disregard for laws or social norms
  • Lie and deceive others

The problem is that they show symptoms of both, but not enough to singularly diagnose one or the other. Time to get back to work.

~~ Ari 

🙂