Does genre fiction receive more respect now than it ever has?
There have been multitudes of novels that have straddled genre throughout written history, but they have never received the type of marketing attention that books get today. I believe our perceptions of genre are manipulated by the publisher's marketing departments and big budgets. With the right, well-targeted fan base a genre novel can fly or flounder. 'Don't judge a book by its cover' is an old adage that may not apply to 2011 when covers are usually tied to ginormous marketing campaigns and interactive media blitzes. Just look at the evolution of the SF/Fantasy reader stereotype over the last twenty years. From the 1990s it's the Dune/Lord of the Rings/Star Wars fan living in his mom's basement on a diet of Doritos and Cherry Coke. The 2010s stereotype is a tween who wants to know 'Are you Team Edward or Team Jacob?'
Stories evolve and styles come and go, but readers always love what they love. Now publishers can target readers more specifically than they ever have, and book clubs are global institutions no longer confined to library and church basements. So while I'm not certain genre fiction receives more or less respect than it ever has, I know that fans and publishers are changing, and now more than ever fans are able to find, and talk about what they love.
| Jason Jack Miller is a writer, photographer and musician who has been hassled by cops in Canada, Mexico and the Czech Republic. An outdoor travel guide he co-authored with his wife in 2006 jumpstarted his freelancing career; his work has since appeared in newspapers, magazines, literary journals, online, and as part of a travel guide app for mobile phones. Several of his articles are in the writing guide Many Genres, One Craft. |
|He received a Master’s in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill where he is adjunct creative writing faculty and he is an Authors Guild member. He's been a whitewater raft guide, played guitar in a garage band and served as a concierge at a five star resort hotel in Florida. When he isn't writing, he's on his mountain bike or looking for his next favorite guitar. He is currently writing and recording the soundtrack to his novel, The Devil and Preston Black. Find him at jasonjackmiller.blogspot.com.|