Sunday, November 1, 2009

Genre Blending or Genre Bending

Years ago, I learned the term "genre blending" from articles in writing magazines. I found it very interesting and thought it a good way to write a novel. At the time I was writing plays and kind of ignoring it. Years later, in 2007 when I started writing fiction, I gave "genre blending" my serious thought.

To my delight, Jonathan Lethem did just that for his first novel in 1994, according to last week's The Seattle Times book reviewer Mark Lindquist. Mr. Lindquist wrote: " . . . was a weird blend of science fiction, hardboiled detective and literary fiction. "Genre bending" is how it was often described. I was a fan but didn't expect Lethem to find a wide audience. I was wrong about that." Mr. Lindquist used "genre bending" to describe a novel that combined two, three genres. In truth, both terms "genre blending" and "genre bending" say the same thing: mixing genres.

Because I like "genre blending," I combine three genres in my work-in-progress novel: fantasy, mystery, and history. And, of course, before we do so, we need to know each genre well. How many genres are there altogether? More than ten, fantasy, detective, romance, to name a few. If you like the idea, pick two, three genres you're famliar with or you love and write your "genre bending" novel. According to my own experience, it's a lot of fun writing "genre blending" fiction. Try it and you'll know what I mean.

1 comment:

Suma Subramaniam said...

Wow, that's an interesting concept, So what are you working on presently Nu?