We’re getting closer to the Christmas season, and that also causes great reflection.
This year has been filled with its blessings and losses; its own amount of fears and successes, hurts and healing. And in the midst of it all, I’ve contemplated new ways to bring my Spark before Dying series alive.
For me, that meant diving into the world of genre and making sure I understood what I write and where my books should be situated. What helped was the website of former Literary Agent, Mark Malatesta. With so much knowledge of the industry, his website called The Book Genre Dictionary has been an eye opener for me. (click here for the listing of fiction genres, and their definitions).
After perusing everything, its clear in my mind that I write crime fiction. Mark says:
What’s the best definition for the crime fiction genre? Crime fiction involves a crime in some way: a crime being committed, or having been committed. A crime story can also be about a criminal’s life. Often crime fiction crosses over or meshes with the suspense, thriller, detective, mystery, action, and/or adventure genres.
There are four common plots in crime fiction: whodunit, murder mystery, hardboiled, and gangster.
So, with this in mind, it is clear that crime fiction has a lot of great writers and characters. It is believed the genre began with the work ‘The Murders in the Rue Morgue’ by Edgar Allan Poe; also included in this genre are Agatha Christie with her character, Hercule Poirot, and Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes. (Many of these characters have been brought to live through television shows or movies — I’d recommend checking them out; personally, I LOVE the BBC’s version of Sherlock with Holmes played by Benedict Cumberbatch and Watson played by Martin Freeman)
For crime fiction, there is also a structure to the genre: “…the crime, usually a murder; then there is the investigation; and finally the outcome or judgement, often in the shape of the criminal’s arrest or death.” What is good about crime fiction as well is that the story can be told from the detectives point of view, but also from the criminal’s.
All of this is to say that in my understanding my role as a crime fiction writer, I also am getting behind the marketing of my books to reach the readers’ expectations. With this in mind, I am in the process of re-branding my books before the next release in the series. The title of the book THOU SHALL NOT has been changed to DEADLY SINS (a clearer and crisper title, with also a clearer cover).
Now, that we’re clear about what crime fiction is … I’m excited about all of these changes and look forward to seeing how it all resonates with you all.
The more I write, the more I learn. This business is hard, but I am more than happy to be a part of it and to continue to produce stories that are enjoyed.