Writing Genres

There is a perception among many writers that the rules of writing change from genre to genre and a writer can only truly master one genre.

Unfortunately, that is just one opinion.

In 1972 there was an interesting book by an author who had sold moderately well by the name of Dean Koontz. Since that time, of course, he has done much better for himself.

I got a copy of the book way back then and read it, a couple of different times. What he wrote was so simple, so elegant, so logical, that it made perfect sense.

The rules of writing do not change from genre to genre. The stylized formats may change but the writing itself must follow the same rules as any other well written work: character development, plot, conflict, and so forth.

One does not have to learn an entirely new artform when changing genres. But one should be familiar with the styles currently represented in the field.

Mister Koontz then went on to show how this worked by taking the same basic story line and re-writing it in several different genres. It was ingenius.

Anyone who has mastered the basics of writing well should be able to convert the story into a different genre, if need be. The styles of the new genre woulod have to be studied (of course!) but other than that small adjustment, there should really be no problem.

As always, it helps to read a lot in that genre and write pieces to test with readers of the genre but none of that is a very hurdle.

Of course, you first have to master writing. And character development.

The rules do not change merely because you changed the sets or the costumes. People are – and always will be – people.


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