Should I Be Writing This Genre?

Often I talk with new authors writing in lots of genres. This is fine if it’s part of your personal writing journey and learning process. I want my authors to enjoy what they’re writing. But when you get serious about publication, know when to choose and what to choose.

One mistake is to write strictly to market when you don’t like the genre. I love to tell the story of a friend who said she knew someone who decided that vampires were popular. This story is timeless, isn’t it, since vampires seem to occupy some place in literature at any time. Anyhow, supposedly he went home to work on a book about vampires. simply because he thought vampires could make him money. I haven’t seen his name on any book, and he started writing about vampires two decades ago. I speculate that he never saw success because he was writing about a topic he saw only as dollar signs. I believe readers will feel this from you whether you know it or not. So choose a topic or genre you have a genuine interest in and love for.

Here are a few questions to think about when choosing your genre. This quiz works for fiction and nonfiction. I will use vampires as the fill-in-the-blank, but you can substitute romance/thriller/prayer/marriage or whatever you like. If you’re struggling between topics and genres, take the quiz as many times as you need, substituting a different topic or genre each time.

1.) Have I read a number of books, both past and present, about vampires?

2.) Did I enjoy the books I read about vampires?

3.) Do I follow authors writing about vampires on social media?

4.) Do I enjoy interacting with authors of vampire novels?

5.) For the most part, do I share the world view of other authors of vampire novels?

6.) When a new book on vampires is released, do I immediately want to get a copy?

7.) Do I have the time, discipline, and will to write about vampires for several years?

8.) Am I willing to research vampire lore to make my book work?

9.) Do I feel a genuine kinship with readers of vampire novels?

10.) Do I respect readers of vampire novels?

11.) Do I feel comfortable around readers of vampire novels?

12.) Do I want to interact with readers of vampire novels on social media?

Your turn:

Do you have a question you’d like to propose as lucky #13?

Why did you choose your genre?

Leave a Comment

Things My Editor Does That I Take for Granted

“You write to communicate to the hearts and minds of others what’s burning inside you, and we edit to let the fire show through the smoke.” – Arthur Plotnik “No passion in the world is equal to the passion to alter someone else’s draft.” – H.G. Wells You editor is someone …

Read More

Thanksgiving Blessings

In the spirit of gratitude on this Thanksgiving Day, I share with you today’s Gospel reading from The Book of Common Prayer: John 6:26-35 26 Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of …

Read More


Holidays. People love them…people hate them. For my family, we fell in the “love ‘em” category. Thanksgiving always means getting together, sharing laughter and great food and playing all kinds of games. We bake and decorate and spend time watching football. Even the challenging Thanksgivings become a source of fun. …

Read More

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due

Everyone is thinking about being thankful this week so it is comforting knowing that I am not alone on this bandwagon. When President Obama said the words, “You didn’t build that,” back in 2012 and drew such ire from opponents, I was troubled. I understood what he was trying to …

Read More

Give Thanks to God

There is a verse in scripture which sets out in bold relief the great besetting problem of the human race. It is Romans 1:21: ‘for even though we knew God…we did not give thanks.’ Astonishing! How can we actually know God and not give thanks? Scarcely a day passes in which we are not deluged by at least a hundred instances of God’s goodness to us. Thanksgiving ought to be the most natural of human reflexes, as spontaneous as drawing breath.

Doubtless there are a plethora of reasons why we do not feel thankful. Perhaps business is stressful, or marriage is disappointing, or parenting is unfulfilling, or health is deteriorating, or school is unrewarding. Or maybe we simply take for granted God’s goodness to us.

How important it is, then, to rehearse frequently all that God does for us. Only then will an unending torrent of thanksgiving be unleashed from our hearts. Nowhere is God’s goodness more compellingly set out in His word. Immerse yourself in what follows, luxuriate in the story of God’s grace to you. . . and be thankful!


Who is like the Lord our God? Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been declared to you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? It is He who is enthroned above the vault of the earth . . . and who stretches out the heavens like a curtain. How majestic is His name . . . When we consider His heavens, the work of His fingers, the moon and the stars which He has ordained, what are we that He should take thought of us?

Read More

But My Critique Group Likes It!

Over the years, I have received this comment from frustrated authors when a work didn’t hit the mark with me. As someone who penned many books in the past myself, I understand and sympathize with these authors. However, this argument will almost  never get an author another read of the …

Read More