Kimberley Grabas writes about genre hopping on Joel Friedlander’s “The Book Designer” site . I am about to do that for the first time and I would have to agree with her, it is probably not a smart move marketing and sales wise.
For those of you who don’t know me well, I have 5 books out in the historical fiction genre, one memoir (not mine) and I am about to publish my first MG (middle grade) adventure mystery story – “Intrigue in Istanbul – An Agnes Kelly Mystery Adventure.”
Why switch genre’s (and age groups)?
I came upon the Flavia de Luce series of Allan Bradley and I was inspired. [If you haven’t read any of Allan Bradley’s books, I’d highly recommend them. They are well written and entertaining.] Because it is quite a jump from adult histfic, I have done more work on the front end to make sure I have the genre and age group down. I have had more readers (over 10) read it ahead of time, had MG readers (5) read it ahead of time and read a lot more in that same genre.
All this will not ensure I do well, but I think it is a good first step. Now I have to figure out how to market to that age group, since it is parents that have the checkbook, it will be an interesting genre to market to. I am told by other MG writers that I need to get into the schools. I happen to have two friends who are MG teachers, so I am going to start there. I am also going to join a children’s writers and illustrators group (Society of Book Writers and Illustrators – SCBWI) as well as talk to other MG writers who are willing to share their marketing wisdom.
Would I do better sticking to my genre? – Probably.
Would I be happy sticking to my genre? – No – to confining.
Do I care? – Not particularly. I still work a day job (helping other writers!) so writing and publishing for myself is the cream in my coffee (if I drank coffee :), that is). And I’m up for the challenge!
I’ll let you know how the jump turns out.