Both as a writer AND a reader.
And, if you’re wondering, when I’m talking about “genres”, I’m talking about… the category of written work. Fiction vs. nonfiction, horror vs. rom-com, realistic fiction vs. fantasy… that sort of thing.
So, you probably… actually definitely already have a favorite genre. And that’s okay; I do, too! And your favorite genre of movie might be different than your favorite genre to write, which could be different still from the genre you prefer to read; that’s okay, too.
For example, my personal favorite type of movie to watch is comedy and rom-coms. My favorite thing to read is actually poetry- and usually not the funny kind. My favorite type of story to write is… well, a tie between comedy and horror/thriller. And, honestly, I absolutely hate watching horror movies… but, for whatever reason, writing them is a whole different ball game to me.
But, anyway, here’s why we’re really here today… I want to encourage you all to try watching/reading (and eventually writing) different genres of stories.
And here’s why.
- You could (and likely will) find something new that you like if you break out of your routine genres.
- Reading different types of genres and styles can actually help you improve your vocab. without much effort.
- You could learn a thing or two about different lifestyles and cultures than what you know now, and, you never know, one of them could maybe even end up being the center of attention in your next hit novella.
- A change of pace could help shake up your writer’s block every once in a while and could greatly improve your state of inspiration.
- You could learn some new facts (especially from the sci-fi types) that you didn’t know before, and you could possibly include these newfound ideas in your next work.
- You could end up taking up a great interest in one specific book (a classic, perhaps?) and find you want to specifically reference it in your next book.
As for trying your own hand at writing new and different genres than what you’re used to, I could type out another lengthy list… but it would all just come down to this:
You will just grow as a writer, with almost no rhyme or reason behind it.
And you can trust me on that. I’m your example of proof.
I never once would have thought of writing an action/adventure story… not even the shortest short story in the world. It sounded way too out of my league for the longest time. But then I took a leap of faith with it, and my first full-length novel, Cartoon, was born. Believe it or not, that was the first time I ever wrote that kind of genre. And… see how it turned out?
And if you find that you think you actually suck at one genre, that’s okay. Try something different and, if you feel up to it, come revisit it at a later time. The first time I tried my hand at comedy (it’s almost always been my favorite to watch, too, so… I guess I just assumed I’d rock at it), it was… awfully terribly cringy. It was a long time ago, though, and every time I look back at it… I just want to pull my hair out. Now, however, I’m trying it once again (for my next big upcoming novel!), and I can safely tell you it’s 156x better.
But, again, if you really find you don’t like something… then it’s alright. Don’t worry about it. I’ve tried nonfiction/memoir-esque things multiple times before… and I’ve come to accept that I actually really very much suck at it. Every time I try typing it up, my mind ends up wandering and wishing I were actually making something else up.
If that happens to you, though… at least you tried, and at least you learned something from it.
And… you never know before you try, right?
Let me know what your favorite genres to write are and if you’ve tried anything new recently… or plan to soon!
Why you need to explore more genres… did I convince you?
-iKari wants to try fantasy and sci-fi next!