Authors can find themselves writing in different genres for multiple reasons: 1) varied interests that demand you try your hand at … well, varied genres; 2) career security; and, 3) a cheating heart. Yes, Hank William’s twang is running through my head right about now. Anyone else?
As you may know, I write historical romances (Sophie Jordan) and paranormal romances (Sharie Kohler), which puts me at writing a book every five months, sometimes less. Why do I hold myself to such a demanding schedule? Which of the above reasons motivates me?
I’m guilty of all three. Like most of us, I’m a voracious cross romance genre reader. Right now I have books in the following sub-genres on my nightstand: historical, suspense, single-title, category, paranormal, young adult, women’s fiction, even the occasional inspirational and erotica (talk about extremes!). Seriously though, great books all. Books that move and inspire me. I cut my teeth on historical romances: Kathleen Woodiwiss, Johanna Lindsey, Dorothy Garlock, Julia Quinn. I love(d) these books! I wanted to write books like these. So – I did. Starting with my debut, ONCE UPON A WEDDING NIGHT. Incredibly (at least to me!), Sophie Jordan was born and here she is, four books later. But I like gritty contemporary reads, too, and decided to try my hand at a paranormal, and MARKED BY MOONLIGHT came to be. Check off reason number one.
Reason two? Career security sounds mercenary, but I figured two balls in the air increased my chances of maintaining a writing career. And above all, I want to write for as long as possible. I want to keep my stories on shelves. It’s the career I’ve always dreamed of – to write romance novels?!? For thousands to read? And I get paid to do it? Yessssssssss.
And what about reason three? A cheating heart touches on reason one a little bit. As varied as my interests, it’s just impossible for me to remain faithful to one genre when there are so many other smooth-talking and good-looking genres out there. Fortunately number three only applies to my books — I’m happily married. 😉
So what do I tell readers who read one of my books from one genre and love it, but claim to dislike books of the other genre? Don’t knock it til you try it! If you like Sophie Jordan, you’re going to like Sharie Kohler, too! Because, be it historical or romance, you’re going to get the same type of emotional journey behind each book. No matter the genre, I write with the same tone, the same level of intensity. Test me! Take the Sophie Jordan/Sharie Kohler challenge by starting with my newest historical release, SURRENDER TO ME and then reading book #1 of my paranormal Moon Chasers Series, MARKED BY MOONLIGHT.
So the question begs to be asked … would I ever add another genre to the mix? Hmmm… can I plead the fifth? Who can say? With my cheating heart, it’s always a possibility. 😉
What about you? Readers: do you cheat, too, and read cross-genre? Or are you loyal to one specific genre? What about the writers out there? Are you exclusive?