Genre tips

#AtoZChallenge: Genres–Regionalism

The A to Z Challenge asks bloggers to post 26 articles on a themed topic. It’s supposed to be every day except Sundays during the month of April but I find that too busy and decided to post mine ‘about’ once a month. Yes, it’ll take me a couple of years. Sigh.

My topic, like the last three times, will be writing genres.

This genre:




a story where the region it takes place in is as much part of the plot as anything else

Tipsa to z

  1. Characters are marked by their adherence to the old ways, by dialect, and by particular personality traits central to the region.
  2. Setting is central to the story.
  3. Include local traditions in detail and authentically, as a way to explain or preserve.
  4. Usually focuses after the American Civil War.
  5. Think historical fiction but with lots of atmosphere.
  6. Focus more on realism than a romantic vision of the world.
  7. Embrace ordinary life rather than escape from it.
  8. Practice narrative distance rendered through a narrator who differs in class or place of origin from the region’s residents.

Popular Books/Authors

  1. All of Sandra Cox’s westerns, the Indie Queen of Westerns
  2. Any of the Amanda Travels series by Darlene Foster
  3. April in Galway by Martha Reynolds
  4. A Ghost and His Gold by Robbie Cheadle
  5. Ordinary Handsome by Steven Baird
  6. Plunge: One Woman’s Pursuit of a Life Less Ordinary by Liesbet Collaert
  7. Most of Mark Twain’s writings
  8. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  9. Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
  10. Most stories by Jack London
  11. Westerns–pretty much any of them

BTW: If the book you’ve written fits into any of the S-Z genres, let me know in the comments and I’ll include you, the book title, and where to purchase it.

Click for complete list of these 26 genres

Click for a complete list of all genres I’ve written about

More R Genres:

Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Man vs. Nature saga, and the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers. She is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, blog webmaster, an Amazon Vine Voice,  a columnist for NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Laws of Nature, Summer 2021. 


72 thoughts on “#AtoZChallenge: Genres–Regionalism

  1. I’d never heard of this genre before, but as I read your descriptions it hit me that many science fiction stories have elements of regionalism at their core. Except that the regions aren’t real. I’m thinking in particular of Dune. If you think of the whole planet as a region, you realise how neatly it fits. Except that it’s not real. No biggie though, right? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I hadn’t heard of this genre, Jacqui, but I have read a few of the books on your list and I’ve certainly read a few in which the setting is important. Many of our Australian books are like that.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for sharing!!.. you have mentioned some authors I have read in the past, mainly 7 through 11… one day may return to them… presently in mysteries, will wait till darkness, a bit of wine, no sound in the house and with the light of the Kindle reading “The Hound of the Baskervilles”… 🙂

    Until we meet again..
    May your troubles be less
    Your blessings be more
    And nothing but happiness
    Come through your door
    (Irish Saying)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This is a favorite genre of mine, so I certainly must explore your suggestions! I love your opening description: “Characters are marked by their adherence to the old ways, by dialect, and by particular personality traits central to the region.”

    Yes, yes, and yes!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I’ve read most of Twain’s work and also To Kill a Mockingbird. I recognise that novel’s importance and how well written it is, but it’s not a book that I ever really liked much. I found Scout an annoying character! Have a good weekend. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Hi Jacqui, thanks for the mention of my book. As I was reading your description of this genre I was thinking that my book probably fitted in here and then I saw you’d added it. I can think of a lot of books in this genre including War and Peace and For Whom the Bell Tolls.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. You noted the regionalism is mostly post-Civil War. In “Life on the Mississippi,” Mark Twain speaks of how a Northerner commented on how beautiful the moon was, only to be told they should have seen it before the war! The South is probably second to the West in books set there–with lots of great writers such as Wendell Berry, Flannery O’Conner, Walker Percy, Shelby Foote, Ferrol Sams, Doris Betts, Rick Bragg (and those are just favorites from the top of my head).

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Thanks for including Amanda Travels in this group. This is one of my favourite genres. The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes fits in this category too. Also some of Barbara Kingsolver’s books are very regional.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Pingback: #AtoZChallenge: Genres–Regionalism — – uwerolandgross

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