Watching World War Z the other day really has my mind working. After I watched it, I had the thought hit me that creates books. The thought was: I want to write a book like that. I’ve been thinking about the type of books I write, and the ones I’m drawn to write.
I find myself being drawn again and again toward the science fiction and horror realm. Not gore as that is a different area of horror. I like stories, not blood and guts even though plenty of my stories have said blood and guts – nothing to see here, moving on.
Vampires and werewolves are defined technically as horror too though many have romanticized them (I include myself in there) so in many ways I do still encompass horror into my writing.
But the horror I’m being drawn to more has complex stories attached. Think Stephen King or Dean Koontz. They are horror and yet, more speculative fiction/science fiction/fantasy-ish, which can be defined as a Suspense or Thriller. In fact, Suspense and Thriller is really the genre I consider myself as a writer of, but marketing is easier at times if I go under the definition of paranormal, romance, and the like. Since I was trying to rebuild my readership the past two years (from changing my author name), I decided that I would stick with marketing my vampires as more of the paranormal romance genre as they fit that too. And lay off the Suspense and Thriller angle for a time. It’s hard to define any of my work within one category. There are elements of so many styles in them because for me: it’s about the story.
Then I watched World War Z, and again my brain and my gut pulled me in that direction. Which led to me the above thought. I found it intriguing to say the least. If I am drawn toward writing a similar style, then I came to the thought process of whether or not I’ll continue down that path. My writing will evolve. It’s human to evolve. I’ve been technically writing since I was young so I have been writing for a while. Never much considered it writing, or that I loved it until I was 25 (11 yrs ago).
Side: I have been writing short horror stories since I was 18. It began as a challenge to myself after reading Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark, not out of a love of writing. More a hobby. Or simple curiosity. I wanted to do the same style of writing for teens like myself, who grew up loving those stories. Well, then I read the Riley Jensen series by Keri Arthur, and that was my, “I can do this!” moment. All writers can usually tell you the book that inspired them to pursue writing.
In the comments, I’d love to hear what your “I can do this!” book was if you’re a writer and can remember it. If you’re a reader, I’d still love to hear a book that has stood out to you as the best writing you’ve read.
Back to the topic. As of late, that has been in my head. I’m curious to see where my stories will evolve to. What writing I will be drawn to. Will it be more science-based, which I adore. Or will it head down more of the horror route? Romance-y-ish? Or no?
I think it does happen through the writing years. We all start with an idea. We think we should do one or another. We’re even told to write what we know, what we don’t know, what we read, on and on. There is such conflicting advice out there. I think we should write what calls to us. Even if it scares us. Those are the best stories to tell. Not genre, not type, not specificity. Just: the story that calls to us. You know what one that is. As you read this: that one whispered to you, didn’t it? Exactly.
Horror and action are my go-to genres. For movies and books. My bubbly personality has people convinced I’d be a writer of fantasy, so it’s always surprising to them to find out how deeply I am drawn to the darkness. As in: horror. Horror isn’t just scary monsters and things that go bump in the night. Horror is depth and complexity, and just what is a monster? Sometimes it can be as frightening as a neighbor who we don’t really know. I am utterly fascinated by thoughts of that nature. The human mind can be far more frightening than a ghost floating down the hall. Though it can be both.
What about you veteran writers? Those of you who have been writing for over 15 years. I’m curious: do you find yourself writing in the same genre as when you began? Or did it change? Did it evolve? I’m really curious to find that out from those of you who’ve been writing for so long.
I’m also really curious to see where my own writing will evolve to. What books will I head toward? I crave depth in books so I imagine my stories will follow that route at least. Complex tales grab me. Monsters, yes. Also things that make me wonder what’s creping through the dark of the house while I’m reading. And . . . I like stories that make me forget. Where I’m at, what I’m reading, that I’m reading. I disappear into the story. I live another life for a time.
Only time will tell.
Word count I started the day with: 7,273
Word count I ended the day with: 9,607
Total for the day: 2,334 words