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Where does my novel fit?

Over the last few weeks I have sent out a number of Query letters. (For those of you who do not know, query letters are basically a sales pitch for your novel.) 

For me this has been the most difficult part. I have had one positive response (a request to read the entire story) Still waiting on their response.  I have had eight rejections (which is to be expected). At this point I have eighteen still out waiting for a response. This is a nerve wracking wait by the way.  

With all of that said and researching agents I have discovered that I truly do not know exactly what genre my story fits in. There is Commercial fiction, Literary fiction, upmarket commercial, upmarket literary, fantasy, new adult, young adult, paranormal thriller, mystery, historical. Oh good grief. 

I have a very cool story about a girl searching through her past to discover who she is and move forward. A connection to the Salem Witch Trials and family and friends full of secrets.  Nothing is what it seems. Plus romance.  I honestly don’t know what genre it fits in. When I wrote my story, I didn’t write with a specific genre in mind, which is making it very difficult to figure out who to query. 

Reading and studying genre’s I can tell you that my story falls into the following categories without one prevailing over the other:

First, Drama. There is drama, 

Fantasy – Witchcraft, magic.  Yep Fantasy

Horror – Well maybe not horror, but scary in parts. 

Legend – based on real events and real people. 

Mystery – duh duh dum…. uncovering essential elements till the very end.

Realistic fiction – Everything is as real as possible when telling a story about magic, but it a real world setting. 

Romance – yes. in fact there are two guys in love with the same girl.  Who will she chose?

Series – yes, I have so much more to her story. 

Here hoping I can figure out where my story fits soon. 

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6 thoughts on “Where does my novel fit?

  1. I think you’re freaking out because you’re building your own pigeonhole and it’s far too cramped by description. Every story has multiple genre elements; pull the focus back and look at what you’ve got, and what it’s big selling point is. If you are confused by what to call it, the agents and publishers sure won’t know and will not have the time to define it for you.

    If the heroine travels back in time to the Salem trials, it’s Time Travel, which is a very popular genre right now. If she doesn’t actually travel back, it’s Fantasy Romance. It’s sort of understood that some of the other elements (mystery, drama, etc) will be included somehow because otherwise there wouldn’t be much of a story without them. The rest of the elements make your story enjoyable and readable, but they underscore the Fantasy and Romance of it all.

    Scissors, Paper, Rock: Time Travel still trumps Fantasy and Romance because of current popularity.

  2. I’m guessing for either New Adult Fantasy Fiction or Young Adult Fantasy Fiction. As for romance, in those two stories, it’s typical to find some romance in the story even it’s in the background.

    • The thing I have discovered about the New Adult Genre is that it is geared for changing from teenager to adult and the struggles that go with that transition. For my character she is twenty five, has been married and is already living in the adult word. Even though her age falls into the New Adult category I’m not sure the story line does. She does change by the end, but not from teenager to adult.

      • Then your story falls into the Adult Fantasy Fiction genre because to the prog being too mature and old for YA and NA. That’s what I personally think but I’ve never seen that level of fantasy fiction in a full adult novel. You might be breaking new ground there. Congrats.

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