Saturday, August 15, 2009

Genre Jumpers Anonymous (except not at all anonymous) And a Giveaway!

I'm thrilled to be hosting my good friend Tanya today. That's me (right) with Tanya (left) during the RWA Literacy Signing at the RWA National Conference last month. Three-time RITA finalist Tanya Michaels is a split personality--writing romances for Harlequin American and, as Tanya Michna, women's fiction for NAL Accent. She's been nominated for awards under both names and has won the Published Maggie of Excellence as well as the Booksellers' Best two years in a row. Published in nearly a dozen languages world-wide, she's sold more than forty books, novellas, essays and short stories. Tanya Michna has a Facebook page, while Tanya Michaels prefers to tweet. Take it away, Tanya...

At least once a day, I find myself reminding my seven-year-old that he has to focus. And I get annoyed with my husband’s self-proclaimed “multitasking.” (Just because he CAN have dinner with me, while watching a baseball game over my shoulder and updating his facebook page via phone doesn’t mean he SHOULD.) And yet, when it comes to books, maybe my attention span is arguably worse than theirs.

Not that I ever get bored with a particular genre, just that I can’t seem to say no to others. I’m amazed by people who pass on great historical novels, saying, “I only read contemporaries.” Or people who absolutely refuse to try anything in first person; others won’t read anything that’s part of a connected series because they don’t want to be “obligated” to read the others. (Me, I write in on my calendar when the next books in a series are coming out!) I read historicals and contemporaries. And fantasy. And young adult. And essay collections. And series romance. And… What about you? Do you find that you stick to one particular subgenre, or do you bounce all over the place to any title that catches your attention?

Frankly, I think that being well-read as a writer gives me an advantage. I feel like it keeps me creatively open-minded, helping me think outside the box instead of focusing too narrowly on the tropes of my subgenre. (Granted, there are certain things that I need to do or not to for my book to qualify as a Harlequin American Romance and satisfy reader expectations, but I don’t want my HARs to be interchangeable with someone else’s.)

To date, I’ve been published in lots of category romance lines and imprints owned by Harlequin, published by NAL Accent (trade women’s fiction) and published in short fiction as well as nonfiction. I learn from all of it. I think that shorter work, especially, is helpful because it forces me to tighten my word choices, keeping me “toned” as a writer. This August one of my Harlequin Americans (Mistletoe Mommy by Tanya Michaels) hit bookstore shelves, and earlier this summer, Baggage Claim (by Tanya Michna) was released. So I was thinking about some of the differences and similarities between my two personalities and what writing for the different publishers gives me.

For starters, there’s increased job security which, in this day and age? Hell, yes. But there’s also double the work and double the site maintenance (as I’ve been traveling all summer, neither Tanya Michaels nor Tanya Michna have been updated recently…sigh). So is it worth it? Absolutely.

I love romance, and I love writing for Harlequin. I like that readers know exactly what they’ll get and how to find it. You want a hot romance? Try a Blaze. You like your romance paired with suspense? Sounds like you need an Intrigue. For Harlequin American, I write warm-hearted romances (sometimes comedic, sometimes poignant, occasionally both) that center not only on the hero and heroine but their surrounding community and family. I personally love to read books with a hefty sense of community, whether it’s one of Jennifer Crusie’s contemporary novels, Eloisa James’ Georgian historicals, or Kresley Cole’s paranormals, with her unique “Lore” community of valkyries, vampires and phantoms, oh my! When a reader picks up one of my Harlequin Americans, she’s promised a love story with a strong secondary cast and a happy ending.

Tanya Michna (who writes women’s fiction) does not promise happy endings. Sometimes, that’s liberating. I don’t feel pigeon-holed. I don’t feel so constrained by word count. But I also struggle more with meeting reader expectations (or figuring out what the heck they even are), nailing down the plot’s turning points and my apparent need to give everyone a romantic storyline. Baggage Claim is the story of two women with little in common who mistakenly pick up each other’s suitcase at a Houston airport. One is a housewife who’s never had a career but considers her long marriage and her grown daughter her successes; the other woman, a professor, is poised to make university history by becoming the youngest ever tenured faculty. She is unquestionably brilliant and driven, a success by many standards, but her personal life is a wasteland of destruction (which is brought home—literally—when her father is killed in a car accident and her injured mother has to move in with her.) Because of the professor’s emotional baggage, she begins the story as a fairly abrasive character. She never would have worked as a heroine for Harlequin, but there was a certain freedom in that. (I see now why the writers of House might enjoy their job—although, because a book has a finite end and television shows go on for seasons, I was able to give her a more complete character journey.)

Mistletoe Mommy is the story of a single father with three (somewhat estranged) kids who meets a small-town pet-sitter who’s never quite seen herself as mother material. Since my own mother runs a pet-sitting company, I thought this would be my chance to use some great anecdotes that I’ve stockpiled over the years (including a pet-sitter locking herself out of the client’s house and having to work her way back in via the doggie door). But the truth was, most of those anecdotes were a word count luxury I didn’t have in a short contemporary novel. Then again, as a mom of two small children, I love how Harlequins are a little shorter and fit into my busy life (I do a lot of reading in carpool!) And I have to admit, there have been a few times as I’ve struggled to meet a women’s fiction deadline that I’d hit a word-count of about 60K and think, “If you were writing a Harlequin, you’d be home by now.” Or something like that.

And then there’s the not yet sold young adult paranormal I’m working on, but let’s not jinx the project by discussing it here!

So, what do you think? Do I have the inability to focus, or am I just creatively well-rounded? What about you guys? Do you find that you enjoy sticking primarily to one genre or are you all over the map?

Let me know what books and genres you’re currently enjoying and be entered into a blog comment drawing—the winner will receive a book from Tanya Michaels and Tanya Michna! (You can decide for yourself which one of them you like better…)


Lynz Pickles said...


flchen1 said...

Oh, Lynz! Congrats on the GR! Now I'd better go back and read Trish and Tanya's post! :)

Lynz Pickles said...

Hi, Tayna! Wow, what an interesting post. And I have to say, the cover of Baggage Claim is absolutely stunning. Stunning, I say! I want that case for myself; it'd be so spiffy for travelling.

I don't think you have an inability to focus at all. Or, if you do, then so do I, and so does almost every other reader I know. I get annoyed when people won't try a good book because it's not in their "genre" or their favourite voice - great fiction is great fiction, regardless of setting or tone. If you give it a chance and don't enjoy it, that's fine, but if you're not open to trying in the first place...

When it comes to single-title books, I mainly read historicals, especially Regencies. Heck, I work for a site that focuses entirely on Regencies. (For anyone who remembers me complaining about the horrible horrible horrible book, I finally finished it and submitted my review this morning. The best line in the whole thing? “...his rampant manhood ready to besiege her welcoming wet fortress.” *snort* Wet fortress! Oh, the imagery!)

The problem I always end up running into in historicals is the balance of power. Because men have historically been "owners" of women, for me to truly love a book set in the past, I need to feel that the hero cares more about the heroine's happiness than anything else. Having her as his number one priority is the only way I can get past the utter lack of legal rights on her part. I have to believe that he'd honestly never do anything that would hurt her, despite the social and legal conventions of the time. I guess I like to feel that my heroines to have the true power in the relatioship, at least when they're acting intelligently. That's a tricky, tricky thing to write, though when it's done right, I fall in love with the book. (*cough*WickedLittleGame*cough*)

So yeah, that whole power balance thing often sends me scurrying to contemporaries. Usually series contemporaries, though, because I'm very lazy and it's easier for me to just say, "Oh, I like this series, I'll probably like this book" than to look up single titles and see what reviewers are saying and other stuff that takes work. I think that the Harlequin editors are generally pretty good at choosing books which all have the same overall feel to them. So I know that if I choose, say, a Presents, I'll probably end up grumbling about virgins and how there aren't really that many sexy Greek/Italian billionaires out there and wondering which school all the slutty ex-girlfriends/fiancées/ wives went to to have their hearts and consciences torn out. Whereas if I choose a Romance, I'll end up feeling like fairy tales really do exist and wondering when my hot-but-still-nice rich guy's going to show up. There are, of course, exceptions - anytime a new Annie West comes out I venture out into the wilds of the Harlequin rack at my local bookstore.

And every now and then, when I'm in the mood for some intense, dramatic angst with some steaming sex on the side, I venture into the paranormals. But I'm pretty sick of vamps and shapeshifters, and it takes actual effort to sort through all the titles involving them... and I already mentioned what my work ethic's like.

Basically, I can't stick to just one category. I've even started venturing into - gasp! - non-fiction these days, but don't tell anyone. It'll ruin their image of me as a fiction-only girl.

Minna said...

Congrats on the GR!
I read all kinds of genres.

Eve and my brother visited yesterday -my brother came here to pick some berries from the garden. Eve, as she didn't have her toys here anymore, made some out of decaying twigs that were still attached to the berry bushes. And expected me to throw them for her.

flchen1 said...

Ooh, definitely creatively well rounded, Tanya!! As a reader, I started out reading mainly contemporaries, but as I've read more and more, I've tried a paranormal here, historical there, and now I pretty much read it all. I like the different settings and characters and plots and love how different genres give me different stuff I love. I also don't like limiting my reading because I might just miss out on a new author or great story to love!

Helen said...

Well done Lynz he obviously loves it at your place enjoy your day with him

What a great post Tanya and thank you very much Trish for inviting Tanya to talk to us today.

Once upon a time I would only read historical romance then I came across the Romance Bandits and I have changed heaps I read so many different genres and am loving them all.

I live in Australia Tanya and we don't get all of the Harlequinn books out here they are called Mills and Boon here but we do get some of them but not all the lines, I have read one of Trish's (and Loved it) but I had to order that one from overseas where I have picked up Beth's and Tawny's here.

Reading the different genres has really opened up a whole new world for me and truly I am loving it I guess historical romance will always be way up there for me but I love picking up a Mills and Boons to read the stories are always great and of course I can get thru them quicker.

At the moment I have just started Stephanie Laurens newest one the last in The Bastion Club series Dalziel's story and have not long finished Nalini Singh's Branded By Fire one of the Pys Changeling series. So for me I love books in a series I get to know the characters and am always busting at the bit for the next one to be released.

I think the only romance genre I haven't tried as yet is YA and I now I will at some stage.

Thanks again for a wonderful post and as far as I am concerned you can never have too many books to read and in all genres LOL

Have Fun

Becke Davis said...

Congrats on the GR, Lynz!

Hi Trish and Tanya! I'm still a struggling writer, but already I've written in different genres. I read everything -- this week I've read a couple of historicals, a paranormal, a romantic suspense and two contemporaries. Usually I'll jump from one genre to another, to keep things interesting.

I've never had a problem with stories written in first person, and I don't really see why so many people have a problem with it.

As far as genre jumping, it seems like a good idea to me. Writing for only one genre or sub-genre is kind of putting all your eggs in one basket. On the other hand, if someone writes really strongly in one style and has no desire to cross over, that's fine, too.

Laurie said...

I'm all over the place with genres. I'm currenting reading Stephanie Meyer's Twilight series. I'm on #3- Eclipse. I've been slow to embrace paranormals but I'm coming around.
I love contemps and historicals: westerns, regency, medieval and victorian. I started out with categories: Harlequin & Silhouettes, Desire, Temptation, Blaze, Presents, Romance, Intrique and Shadows. Love the anthologies too.
I've recently discovered the Inspirationals which also come in historical and suspense.
I do have several favorite authors but I'm always willing to try someone new.

jcp said...

I'm reading mostly contemporary erotic fiction (I;m reading Bella Andre's backlist now or categories from eharlequin. (I really enjoyed A Batural Father by Sarah Mayberry and The Cowboy's Baby by Patricia Thayer (misleading titles, imo)

Tanya Michaels said...

Thanks for all the feedback guys!

Lynz, I haven't read Wicked Little Games--will put in on the TBR list post haste!

>>>I started out reading mainly contemporaries, but as I've read more and more, I've tried a paranormal here, historical there, and now I pretty much read it all<<

Welcome to the Dark Side, flchen1 :-)

>>I'm still a struggling writer, but already I've written in different genres<<

When I first joined RWA, I think I was afraid to try different genres--it seemed sensible to me that if I bounced around too much, I'd never hone my craft. (And there is some truth to that I think, esp. in my friends who are starting a new first chapter of a different project every wk without ever seeing a project through.) However, it wasn't UNTIL I started bouncing around that I figured out what my strengths were. I'd been trying to write dark, angst historicals--turned out I was a lot better at contemporary comedy. If I hadn't figured that out, I probably still wouldn't be published! (Although I've gone back now and played with darker stories and books that aren't straight contemps, so once you have a solid handle on your own voice, I think you can get more flexible with it.)

Off to all day writing meeting, will check back later!


cheryl c said...

I read a nice blend of historicals and contemporaries. I am not a big fan of paranormals.

Anna Sugden said...

Hi Tanya! So glad to welcome a fave Harlequin author to our Lair!

I agree with Lynz - that cover for Baggage Claim is to die for!

I'm a genre-jumper too. I love contemps, romantic suspense, romantic comedy, western historicals and even some English historicals *g* (I'm the resident Brit Bandita). The only paranormal I enjoy tends to be what I call light woo-woo or humourous light woo-woo. I also love sports hero romances!

Oh, and I know this will surprise you all, but I even read non-fiction ... if it's hockey-related!

If I'm bored, I'll read anything and everything. The latest delight was Tractor Weekly at the doctor's.

MJFredrick said...

I am all over the map. I've published romantic suspense and a straight contemp, and sexier novellas, and I've dabbled in paranormal and futuristics. The ideas, they don't leave me alone!

Have to say, the hero on Mistletoe Mommy has a Sam Winchester hair thing going on.

joder said...

Even though I read lots of different genres, I'm currently reading a slew of paranormal books.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Lynz, you're on a roll! :>

Welcome Tanya! Great post/interview, Trish!

Tanya I had to LOL about the multitasking husband and telling your child to FOCUS. My sons hear that all the time. My DH isn't so bad about multitasking - accountants don't multitask, he tells me - but I do get your point.

It's fascinating to read about both your "lives" and how you juggle it.

tetewa said...

My favorite genre is Paranormal but I also enjoy Suspense and Contemporary, I love them all!

EllenToo said...

I read primarily suspense/intrigue and comtemporary romance. I will read some very select paranormal but not often and I don't read historical(maybe because I spent a large part of my life teaching history??) And I read every Harlequin American that is published.

Joan said...

Welcome to the Lair, Tanya!

I'm a Anna put it. My main love is historical (HIGHLY recommend Christine's Wicked Little Game)and in particular thirst for new time periods.

Paranormal is my second love and am delving into my first ever one as an author (Though there is this pesky second connected Roman series plucking at my brain)

Ultimately, I'll read a good book no matter the genre.

Pissenlit said...

Congrats Lynz!

Hiya Tanya, like you, I don't stick to just one genre. We totally can focus! Just on different different times. Heh heh heh!

My usual genres include mystery, suspense, sci-fi, fantasy and romance...and a number of those subsequent sub-genres. Sometimes I'll stray to other genres. Oh and does YA count as its own genre? I've been reading some of that recently too. At the moment, I'm feeling a pull towards straight up fantasy, urban fantasy and sci-fi. It sort of all depends on what I'm in the mood for. Often times, even if I've been waiting for a book to come out for over a year, if I'm not feeling the genre, I'll bump it lower on my neverending TBR list. Wait, does that just make me undisciplined? :D

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Lynz, congrats on nabbing the bird.

I'm just back from my local RWA chapter meeting and ready to catch up and see what you fun ladies have been up to today.

MsHellion said...

I read across a lot of genres, I think. I read:

Women's fiction

Historicals (both the wallpaper versions and the ones more deeply grounded--ones that might not be shelved with regular historical romance, like The Other Boleyn Girl or The Emancipator.)

Contemporaries--most of these I read are in the quirky, funny line. Like Bridget Jones or chick lit. Sophie Kinsella and Hester Browne are my favorites here.

Paranormal--Sherrilyn Kenyon is my favorite here, but I like the Jessica Anderson series about the Mayan prophecy.

Young adult--Libby Bray's series got me hooked into reading more and more young adult stuff. I did read Twilight, but I didn't think it was the best thing I ever read. (I'm admittedly not a fan of Romeo and Juliet though.) Harry Potter is the bomb--but he's more children's books, isn't he?

Children's books: I've begun listening to the Lemony Snicket on CD in my car (Tim Curry reads them--and he is perfect for this sort of book)--and these books crack me up. I'd like to meet the author just to shake hands. He's so witty and clever...and drops in so many allusions to other great literature, it's fun to try to pick them out. It's hilarious.

I do tend to veer from the following: categories (I feel they are usually too short) and romantic suspense (I'll watch Law & Order, but not intested in reading about it.) I also veer from sci-fi romance and sci-fi--I've never had any desire to go to the moon or travel in space, and I definitely can't handle going to a planet where the animal that is clearly a horse is named a sneazel. And everyone's name has too many vowels and not enough consonants. Gah.

Fortunately though there are books enough for everyone, and I know lots of people who love categories and sci-fi and FBI/suspense books. I knwo they're not hurting because I'm not reading them. *LOL*

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Tanya, you and I are so much alike it's freaky. :) I totally understand the whole split personality and liking to read and write in different genres/subgenres.

Lynz, I agree about the historicals. I like realism but not too much, you know. I want the romanticized view of the past -- not the one without good hygiene and women as chattle.

MsHellion said...

There are, of course, exceptions - anytime a new Annie West comes out I venture out into the wilds of the Harlequin rack at my local bookstore.

This is so true. Whenever an Annie West book is out is when I venture to the Harlequin side of the bookracks. *LOL* She is an awesome exception.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

I started out as a historical romance reader and pretty much just read those for years. I'm an American-set gal, and at one time they were very popular. My two favorite types are westerns and Colonials -- though I've read fabulous historicals in many locales around the world.

The first book I wrote was a historical, but I then veered into contemporaries and have been there ever since. I love paranormal and urban fantasy and hope to sell into the paranormal market soon.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Helen, thank you so much for your kind words about my book.

I, too, have discovered a lot of authors and books through the guests we've had here on Romance Bandits. My TBR stacks are beginning to resemble the Himalayas.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Becke, wow, you're a reading machine! I've never understood the not reading first person either. I write in first person for my YA books -- it just seems more immediate and intimate.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Laurie, I'm not a big inspirational reader, but like all the other genres there are great writers and books out there in this area. I really like Tamera Alexander's historical inspirationals -- westerns, my favorite.

Mari said...

Right now I am reading historicals and historical paranormals.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Anna S., Tractor Weekly? Really? LOL.

MJ, he does have Sam hair, doesn't he? :)

Ellen, I LOVE to hear that you are a big fan of the American line. :)

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Joan, I too would like to see new time periods (and new settings) brought into the historical romance offerings.

Anna Sugden said...

Add me to the list of those wanting more historical periods. I'd love post-1900 to WW2. They keep talking about romances set in the 20's as being the next period. I'd love to write a WW1 or WW2 romance.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Pissenlit, YA is definitely it's own genre. It often mixes with others -- paranormal, contemporary, romantic comedy, etc.

MsHellion, I really enjoyed Libba Bray's series. As far as Harry Potter, to me it started out as children's books and moved into YA as Harry, Ron, Hermione, etc., aged into their teenage years and started dealing with some of the things that teens in other YA books deal with -- hormones, crushes, broken hearts, etc.

Anna Sugden said...

Also add me to the list of fans for Wicked Little Game! Another winner from our Christine (how's Jardine's book coming along? *g*)

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Anna, I'd love to see more romances set during the World Wars too. I like movies set then, and I enjoyed Jill Barnett's Sentimental Journey. Plus, I love '40s fashions.

Anna Sugden said...

Yes, Trish. Really. I told you I read anything when I'm desperate - it was that or something about golf (can't stand golf)

Even funnier, I went into a local bookstore and they had 13 different tractor magazines!!! Who are all these tractor fans?! And ... there is even a show for tractor fanatics on TV. *thunk*

housemouse88 said...

Right now I've been enjoying romantic suspense, contemporaries, and paranormals. However, I'll read everything. Have a great day.

Becke Davis said...

Trish - I have to read your YA(s). It's not my first-read genre, but my 26-year-old daughter loves YA and is always pushing books on me. Thanks to her, I discovered that wonderful Libba Bray series, and other great authors, too. Now if only I could get her hooked on romance. She must have a decent-sized TBR pile by now, with all the books I've sent her, but she's fighting tooth and nail!

Tanya Michaels said...

>>Have to say, the hero on Mistletoe Mommy has a Sam Winchester hair thing going on.

LOL, I love you MJ :-) That's the nicest thing anyone's ever said about that cover. (Although I agree that the Baggage Claim cover is FABULOUS. I can't take any credit for it at all, of course. NAL just has a great art dept.)

>>So glad to welcome a fave Harlequin author

Awww, thanks Anna!

Tanya Michaels said...

Ms. Hellion, you mentioned quirky women's fiction--have you ever tried Marian Keyes? She's had a couple that I just loved.

Also, for people who want something a little different in historicals, as far as era and setting, I highly recommend Sherry Thomas' Private Arrangements and her most recent Not Quite a Husband, which is about an English married couple but set in India.

And who knew there was such a big tractor following? Clearly my next heroine should drive a John Deere.


Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Trish and Tawnya! Lovely post.

I, too, marvel at people who only read one subgenre....or even, *gasp*, ONE author!

Shoot me now!

I can't leave the bookstore with only, author, or subgenre! The other day I went and came home with Suz Brockmann's newest Navy SEAL contemporary, Sherrilyn's newest darkhunter paranormal, Julia Quinn's regency historical, Jo Davis' erotic suspense and Stacey Kayne's western historical. (I see an intervention in my future.) And this was all so I could have "something to read while at work".

And I do think you have the ability to multi-task and focus. Let me ask you this, do you find yourself working on two books at once? A little here, a little there?

Helen said...

I agree with everyone else as well Christine's Wicked Little Game is a must read it truly is awesome and yes I too am really looking forward to Jardine and Louisa's story YAY

Have Fun

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Hey, Becke, make a deal with your daughter -- you'll read a YA book for every romance she reads. :)

LOL on your next hero driving a John Deere, Tanya. :) I have Private Arrangements but haven't read it yet. I also have some Jade Lee books, which are set in China, a setting that is fascinating to me.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Suz, I think we all suffer from the book-buying addiction. Very rarely do I come within sight of a bookstore and not get at least one, usually more, book(s).

Tanya Michaels said...

>>>Let me ask you this, do you find yourself working on two books at once? A little here, a little there?

Honestly, what I prefer to do is be immersed in one bk at a time because it's jarring to go from one set of characters to another. However, because of overlapping deadlines, I'm often revising a proposal for one publisher, finishing a manuscript for another, and then sometimes have to stop and proofread galleys for the last book I turned in right in the middle. So if story-bouncing doesn't bother you, I think you already have a leg up!

(It never bothers me to be READING more than one book at once--usually have one in the house and one in the car. But when I get deeply into a certain world of mine and then have to switch, I feel disoriented.)


Suzanne Welsh said...

So if story-bouncing doesn't bother you, I think you already have a leg up!..

It doesn't bother me, but it really hacks off my beta readers! LOL

Louisa Cornell said...

Lynz, you are fast approaching girlfriend status with the GR. Just remember he IS a fickle one. Ask some of his other flames like Fedora!

Tanya ! How nice to see you in the Lair! I have some great photos of you with my buddy Tammy Lynn in the bar the first night of the National Conference. She and I are both big fans of ALL of your work.

Hey, I just consider you VERSATILE! And in this business in the current market that HAS to be a good thing.

I read all kinds of books - fiction and non (mostly Regency research) For the most part I read historical romance because that is what I write. But when I am in the mood for something different I also read a lot of paranormal. Then romantic suspense. Then contemporary series, then, well you get the picture.

As varied as my reading is, I am only in my element writing historical romance - Regency almost exclusively.

I've written some things in other genres, but I just don't get the rhythm and flow of them well enough to write them. Writing Regency historicals (especially the dark Gothic sort) is like singing opera (my former career.) It flows. I do it for the joy of it and it stretches my gifts to better and better use.

I think you just happen to be a woman of MANY gifts!


I'm reading a single title. it's sort of got an element of mystery, but feels a little like women's fiction. I don't know what the heck it is. I stories.

catslady said...

I pretty much love all genres. I do usually pass on erotica or inspirationals (each extreme lol) but I have read them. At the moment I'm reading historicals but I definitely change it up quite a bit.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

I'm much like Tanya in that I don't like to actually be writing more than one book at once but can be at various stages on different books. I actually like bouncing back and forth between my Harlequins and the YA because I don't get bored that way. It keeps things fresher, I think.

I don't tend to read more than one book at once either, of fiction anyway.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Louisa, I think you made a good point about being versatile being a good thing in the current market. From early on, I knew I wanted to write in more than one market for more than one publisher so that I didn't have all my eggs in one basket. If I wanted to make writing my career, I wanted to take advantage of every opportunity that presented itself.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Kelly, sometimes it's fun to read something that isn't easily classifiable. I think it frees up the authors to do all kinds of interesting things.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

So, to get more specific. What book is everyone reading right now? I just finished J.R. Ward's Lover Avenged last night so tonight I'll start the third book in the Vampire Diaries series, The Fury by L.J. Smith. I might have gone for something else between the vampire books, but this one came in from the library after being on hold so I have to read it now to get it back in time.

Louisa Cornell said...

I just finished C.S. Harris's WHY MERMAIDS SING. Anyone who hasn't read this series is missing a great ride. Her ability to keep the truth just beyond your reach is amazing. I am REALLY ticked about what she did to the hero and heroine at the end of this one so I HOPE she gets them back together again in the next one or at least very soon. It is more historical fiction than romance, but the romance in it is an amazing one!

Nancy said...

Lynz, you're on a roll! I hope you work the rooster very, very hard. *g*

Tanya, welcome back! Most people here do not know that I actually saw you in person earlier today. Great chatting with you!

Can I join the genre jumpers club? I have mss. in historical romance, contemporary action-adventure, and historical fantasy. And science fiction.

I know what you mean, though, about some characters not working in some arenas. Romance wants HEA, and while I love that, I sometimes want to do something more open-ended, as many of the books I love are.

Nancy said...

Oh, I never answered the question! Definitely, this versatility of yours is the sign of a versatile mind--not a problem!

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Louisa, I've heard good things about the C.S. Harris books. I'll have to add those to the TBR.

Nancy, so jealous you and Tanya got to see each other today, but I guess we'll all see each other in 18 days!

BTW, Nancy, Tanya and I will be doing a post-Dragon*Con post next month with photos galore!

Joan said...

I just finished Suzanne Brockmann's Hot Pursuit.

That woman KNOWS deep POV...and how to creep the h*ll out the reader...

I'm eagerly anticipating DreamFever from Karen Marie comes out Tuesday!

Nancy said...

Trish, read the C. S. Harris books in order.

Can't wait for DragonCon. I assume you'll be in the Bujold line with me? Did you read Miles's adventures yet?

Nancy said...

Joan, I have the Brockmann but have not yet read it. Don't really like being creeped out, so you're making me hesitate.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Nancy, alas, I've not had time to read the Miles books yet. But if there's nothing on the schedule that I REALLY want to go to at the time Bujold is speaking, I'll go to that.

There are a couple of books coming out next month that I'm really looking forward to -- Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (the sequel to the wonderful The Hunger Games) and Covet by J.R. Ward (the first in a new series by her).

Joan said...


That's the gift of a good storyteller.....

It stays with you!

Read. It.

kim h said...

loving contemps and ertoics
loved going all teh way
miss tempatations books lvoe blazes
hope u write for that series

Cathy Shouse said...

Thanks for a peek into how and why to write in different genres.

I'm currently enjoying reading an older book of Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I just ended a jag of reading cozy mysteries. I took a side road (for me) and read some historicals.

I don't think you lack focus. In fact, it's just the opposite. I would imagine writing for two genres would help you stay perfectly within each. Many people straddle genres which can be confusing.

I'd love to win the books :)

cathy underscore shouse at yahoo

Karen H in NC said...

I'm pretty much stuck in my favorite genre of historical romances but I do like to vary the eras such as American Revolution, Regency, American Civil War and Victorian (English & American). When I do step out of my favorite genre, it is usually for a mystery/suspense/thriller type novel.