Calling All Writers—Where Do You Fit?

Novelist Carlos Fuentes said, “Don’t classify me, read me. I’m a writer, not a genre.” Those words rang true this week during a discussion with a writer friend.

“I don’t know where I fit in,” my friend told me. “I just know that I love writing about this stuff.” (Notice he emphasized the word “love.”)

My friend’s stuff is bees; yes, bees, specifically the bee population’s rapid decline due to environmental changes.

“I’m thinking of, maybe, writing a thriller or science fiction book about bees,” he said, “or maybe fantasy—something like ‘Lord of the Rings,’ or ‘Narnia’ . . . or maybe something else?”

In the publishing world, tagging our writing with a genre is key to writing a killer proposal and marketing our books. But what if we set aside genre and books for the moment and just concentrate on what we love to write? Where might that take us?

“Don’t give up your dream of writing a book,” I told my friend. “But in the meantime, where else can your writing love take you? How about blogging about bees? Write an editorial piece for our local paper. Create some articles. Do some educational ‘stuff’ for kids.” By the end of our conversation, my friend was lost in thoughts of technical writing and how his writing might fit in there.

Writers love writing about many different topics and in many different forms, but sometimes they compromise their love in order to fit in with genres in mainstream publishing. What do you love to write about? Where, other than books, might that love take you?



Filed under Aspiring Writers, Dealing With Rejection, Uncategorized

6 responses to “Calling All Writers—Where Do You Fit?

  1. I can definitely relate. I know what I want to write and how I want to write it. I have to see it as a ministry as much as a business so I don’t get too bent out of shape if my books don’t sell in great quantities.

  2. This really makes me think, Jean, thank you! Been tossing ideas about lately, and thinking about where I’ve been, where I am going, etc. Thank you for additional food for thought. 🙂

  3. Hi Jean –

    My first love is non-fiction. Recently, I had the opportunity to submit to two anthologies. What a delightful experience! I also love fiction, but it takes a long time to see work published on that side of the fence.

    Susan 🙂

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