Monday, September 6, 2010

Blog Chain - The Grass is Always Greener in That Other Genre...



Happy Monday Everyone! I get to start off the week with another entry for the ol' Blog Chain. This topic was chosen by the fabulous Margie, who wants to know:

How did you come to write your YA genre (e.g. contemp, fantasy, etc.)? AND (yep, it’s a 2 parter), if you weren’t writing that, what genre would you be interested in exploring?

Answer Part 1:

It just sort of happened LOL Okay, I started out writing adult historical romances. They are what I grew up on, what I love, just about all I read. I got my first degree in History. I love it, I soak it up. And romance - it's just part of who I am. I very seriously doubt I could write fiction without a tinge of romance :)

Then one day, I finally gave into several friends' urgings to try reading YA. And I totally fell in love with it. I love the pacing, the sweetness of the romance involved, the fun story lines. I was hooked. And ideas for YA's started popping up in my head.

I tried revising my first historical romance into YA. Then I wrote a YA Urban Fantasy. And after several false starts and despite a file of ideas for more Urban Fantasies, I've decided I'm going to stick with my first love, history. The majority of my ideas are historical. It's what feels natural and what I think I'm good at. And combined with YA, I've got a genre I absolutely love to write.

I still read more paranormal/urban fantasies than historicals - but for writing purposes, I am a YA historical writer.

Answer Part 2:

Well, I've sort of explored other genres already. As I said, I didn't start out in the genre I'm in now. And I have a few unfinished straight contemporary manuscripts as well. I just lose interest in them quickly.

However, I am lucky because I already write other genres; namely picture books and non-fiction. Both of which I love, and one of which (so far) I've found success in.

So, that's me - writer of YA historicals, picture books, and non-fiction (writing help books at the moment). Oh, and I dabble in that poetry thing on the side ;-)

Head back to Laura's blog to see her writerly tendencies, and don't miss Shaun's answers tomorrow!

How about you? What do you write? Have you tried on other genres? Or would you like to?

18 comments:

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan said...

I used to read a lot of historicals when I was younger too. What's your favorite time period?

Sarah Bromley said...

Nice answer, Michelle! It sounds like you know precisely what you're comfortable writing, what you're passionate about.

Christine Fonseca said...

Nice! And yep - you have a knack for the historicals - adult or YA!

Shaun Hutchinson said...

I'm so glad you came to YA. It's where all the fun is :)

nomadshan said...

(1) What Sandra asked, and (2) are you interested in the big historical events, or general daily life of a period, or both?

Michelle McLean said...

Hey Shannon :) For Sandra's question, I don't really have a favorite. I go through phases - I really love ancient Egypt, pretty much anything English/Scottish/Irish, especially medieval to about 1800...I've got books on my shelves spanning from Clan of the the Cave Bears to The Great Gatsby and everything in between :D

For your question, both LOL My reading tends to lean toward the big events. My own stories are generally just regular people set in that time period, though I have a few ideas for books that are more centered around a specific event or person.

I LOVE Carolly Erickson's books and Philippa Gregory's books. I read a lot of bios, mostly historical women like Lucrezia Borgia, Marie Antoinette, Elizabeth I, Alexandra Romanov, Isabeela of France (married to Edward II, very interesting book), Empress Matilda, Eleanor of Acquitaine, etc

And I watch a lot of what my sis calls "poofy dress" movies LOL We love to drool over the gorgeous costumes :D

Elana Johnson said...

I'm so glad you made the switch to the dark side. Mwa ha ha!

Jen said...

I currently write YA fantasy and adore it! I have so much fun with world building and seem to do it well.

If I couldn't I suppose I'd go for a chick lit or horror genre, I know, I know, different spectrums completely but I've dabbled in both!

Amanda said...

Great post, Michelle! Though I love to read my crit partners' YA and contemporary works, I just know I could never write one. I think sticking to what you know and love is what will make your writing shine! Good luck with your historical projects! I'd love to read one someday :)

Cole Gibsen said...

I admire you so much for writing historicals. I don't have the guts. Too much research! lol

Misha said...

I read so many genres that I'm always thinking about writing a new genre.

I have compromised and ended up writing two genres, Fantasy and an Adult Historical Romance. Although the romance is more of a sideline thing, due to the logistics involved when it comes to research...

Carolyn V. said...

I love it Michelle! I started writing YA when I took a writing class and the author told me I had a great voice for YA, so I changed. I love it!

Eric said...

Great post. This is why I like this blogchain, because so many of you dabble all over the place with writing. It's a great example to learn from :)

Margie Gelbwasser said...

I really like your answer and it's fantastic you get to write so many different genres! Definitely makes it more fun.

lbdiamond said...

Historicals are fun, but you definitely need to know the time period! :D

Kate Karyus Quinn said...

Wow, so many great genres that you've given a try - and then add non-fiction and poetry into the mix too! Very impressive!

Kat Harris said...

I think writers should stretch outside the genre in which they are used to writing. I think it presents a challenge each of us needs.

:-)

Have an awesome day!

B.J. Anderson said...

I soooooooo loved that first historical romance!! :D :D Great post!