We all know the big 8.
Those genres of fiction that have been around for centuries. Maybe millenia. Bible –> Inspirational. See also ‘crime’ and ‘horror. It’s actually not that simple. It’s not just fantasy. It’s High fantasy. Epic fantasy. (Same thing, apparently. ETA- a couple of people have commented to clarify there is a difference between the two. I’ve heard both sides, FWIW. Does it really matter? To some people, yes. To the relevance of this blog post. . . maybe a little.)
So what the &*(#$)(%#& are all these new ones?
These are the ones that I’d never heard of and had to look up. For the record, I think having genres is a great thing: it’s organizational. Where would we be if we didn’t know how to find what we were looking for? But I want to be clear: having so many sub genres and genres can be confusing to people who don’t make it their business to memorize the writing/reading/literary business. IE- most people.
To see what I’m talking about, check out this comprehensive Wikipedia list to see how many sub-genres we’re dealing with here.
High Fantasy- AKA- epic fantasy. There are three types. 1- one with a new world. A Game of Thrones. Lord of the Rings. 2. A new world obtained by entering the world through a portal. Alice in Wonderland, Chronicles of Narnia. 3. A world within a world that self functions. Harry Potter, Percy Jackson.
This person has a blog dedicated to high fantasy, if you’re interested. Basically, it’s a big story in a different world that doesn’t necessarily focus on just one plot point. It’s a little more expansive and involved.
New Adult Romance- New Adult helps fill in the gap between Young Adult to Contemporary Romance. This is a great post on it. Another great way to put it: New Adult is a coming of age story featuring a protagonist that is newly independent. It can be romance, or a bit more angsty.
Erotica- if I have to tell you, then I can’t help you. Go here.
Steampunk- it’s not just a fashion movement, folks. –> Think of it as Wild Wild West with Will Smith meets H.G. Wells.
– alternatives 1900’s-ish history
– Steam power is main source of power. (Trains, you know. Locomotives.)
– Industrialized Western civilization during the 19th century meets fantasy or apocalypse.
Can you say this genre sounds like the most amazing thing ever? If I don’t respond to your comments, it’s probably because I’m reading Brooke Johnson’s Steampunk book, Le Theatre Mecanique.
Speculative Fiction- Here’s how smart I am- speculative fiction isn’t new. Ha! It’s actually an umbrella term for fantasy-esque stuff. Fantasy. Horror. Sci-fi. (ETA- I got the umbrella term reference from Wikipedia. While it’s not the BEST source of reliable information, it also represents what a lot of people believe, and that’s what I’m going off of here. Reality is perception, no?)
Now, this is the part where you recommend really good books in all those genres for me and the rest of my lovely followers to read. Ready. Set.