writers / writing

#IWSG Least Favorite Genre

This post is for Alex Cavanaugh’s Insecure Writers Support Group (click the link for details on what that means and how to join. You will also find a list of bloggers signed up to the challenge that are worth checking out. The first Wednesday of every month, we all post our thoughts, fears or words of encouragement for fellow writers.

This month’s question — What genre would be the worst one for you to tackle and why?

Co-hosts this month are: Kim Lajevardi, Cathrina Constantine, Natalie Aguirre, Olga Godim, Michelle Wallace, and Louise – Fundy Blue!

xxx

I tried to come up with one answer for this, but every time I settled, a second one–equally onerous and challenging–popped up. If you had to decide, which of these two would you pick:

Memoir

I am pretty private, share begrudgingly and as rarely as possible. If I’m honest, I think it’s as much that I’m embarrassed to put my personal life out there as that I think it’s boring. You will rarely (read that: never) see me as part of a blog hop about personal stuff.

Fantasy

To me, what fantasy writers do is magic. They create entire worlds out of intangible nothings. The good ones, I fall in love with. I think they are the tip of the creativity spear. My writing is much more structured, research-based, and logical. Fantasy writers: I bow to your talent.

If you leave a comment, I’ll be by to check on your answer!

#iwsg #amwriting

@TheIWSG


Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular prehistoric fiction saga, Man vs. Nature which explores seminal events in man’s evolution one trilogy at a time. She is also the author of the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers and Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. Her non-fiction includes over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, reviews as an Amazon Vine Voice,  a columnist for NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Natural Selection, Fall 2022.

111 thoughts on “#IWSG Least Favorite Genre

  1. Ooh, interesting choices! I always thought that I couldn’t write fantasy because I’d have to be as good as Tolkien, inventing languages and history and agriculture and so on… I feel like I might try memoir sometime but I never feel old and wise enough :p

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Jacqui – I couldn’t write personal memoir … but I could write a sort of life story for my family … one reasonably true – as I have that information, the other would be a made up one … which would be fairly easy – as it’s based on Penwith – west Cornwall. Cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for sharing!!.. don’t have a least or most favorite genre, I just read what the heart wishes at the time. nothing ventured, nothing gained… will I read it again Que Sera Sera… 🙂

    Until we meet again…
    May the sun shine all day long
    Everything go right, nothing go wrong
    May those you love bring love back to you
    And may all the wishes you wish come true
    (Irish Saying)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Horror would be difficult to write for me. Just thinking about immersing myself in that world is uncomfortable. I do like reading it if the book is well written and the story makes sense. The problem with horror is that so much of the behavior and actions of characters don’t make sense to me.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Genres I will never try to write. Hmmm ….
    -Memoir (yes, good one)
    -Erotica (just no)
    -Self-help (no no no! There are already too many of these out there, plus they don’t actually help. I am especially looking at you, parenting books!)
    -Academic paper. (I have dipped my toe in these before, but luckily I was miraculously saved from a career in academia.)

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Memoir – no, I’m not going to write a memoir. I don’t like talking about myself, just like you. There have been a few amusing anecdotes in my life that I already shared with the readers in one essay or another. But overall, my life just hasn’t been that interesting.
    On the other hand, half of what I write is fantasy (another half is sci-fi). So fantasy is my genre, and has been from the beginning. Speculative fiction is what I mostly read too. I like to be as far away from reality as I could get, in both my reading and my writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Jacqui, your choice of worst genre is interesting. I am considering a book called The Little Girl Who Loved Dolls about my early years. I did so many fabulous things with my little sisters and I would like to write this for myself and my family. Self indulgent, but I think my childhood was amazing. I wouldn’t write about my adult life as that is a little plain, same house, same husband, no family dramas or secrets… I think historical writing is very important and it helps younger generations remember the past in an interesting and inspiring way. I am not a big fan of fantasy although Diana Peach is an exception, no-one could dislike her beautiful books.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. As you know, I’ve written in a few genres. My first book was fantasy, and I’ve also written some romance … both genres I’m not sure I’ll return to, but who knows? I don’t think I have the patience for research I used to, so that probably rules out historical fiction from me, lols. I admire the amount of research you do, Jacqui. Great question! 💕🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m quite opposite to you, Jacqui. Which you might have noticed. I enjoy sharing my lifestyle choices and my thoughts. Therefore, memoir is the easiest genre for me to write. Nobody can question me or set me right. The story is mine. And this genre does not require much research. I’m not a fan of research. Too much work. I’d rather write from the heart.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Even though my appreciation for it has grown, I think it’s safe to say that I’ll never write a fantasy. I am much more likely to choose and write contemporary books about the problems we all struggle with in our everyday lives. Some might say that is boring, but I like to get inside the head of my characters and feel what they’re feeling. Inner struggles are particularly fascinating to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I too appreciate it more, as I do sci fi, but not interested in writing it. The inner struggles of people–that’s interesting you’d say that. You’re writing a children’s book–right? Do I remember that? That couldn’t be an unusual mix.

      Liked by 1 person

      • What’s the old saying? “Write what you know.” I understand kids and the types of problems they have and struggle with. I know precisely what I want to write. Now there’s that tricky part of actually executing it.😊

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Well, I am writing a memoir, but it’s not so much about me as about the discrimination and injustice indigenous people experienced in Canada. Unexpectedly living in an isolated northern community upended my understanding of the world. Your writing is awesome, Jacqui!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. High fantasy is definitely not a genre I should write, Jacqui, as that kind of immersive worldbuilding is beyond my skillset. And as much as I enjoy a great whodunit, I don’t have the mind to write a satisfying, original detective story; I don’t know how crime authors so skillfully plant the seeds and clues that will ultimately payoff in a big revelation!

    Liked by 2 people

      • I’m a recovering screenwriter! Haha! Much happier as a novelist than I ever was as a screenwriter. In Hollywood, my stock-in-trade was “supernatural action” projects (think Blade with Wesley Snipes). As an author, my work has almost exclusively been in the realms of supernatural horror (werewolves, zombies, etc.) and magical realism (stories about “enchanted items” in the everyday world). I tend to write stories set in a very real and recognizable world… that are then turned upside-down by the introduction of a speculative element.

        I write that kind of fiction — supernatural horror and dark fantasy — because it’s the genre I love most, and certainly the one that’s been the most influential to my creative identity. I grew up loving movies like The Lost Boys and Coppola’s Dracula, and reading fiction like Anne Rice and Stephen King. I don’t enjoy torture porn or nihilism — that particular kind of horror isn’t for me — but I love a good story about the supernatural, the paranormal, or the occult!

        Liked by 1 person

  13. I could write memoir – as long as I didn’t have to tell the truth that my whole life is too boring to read about. Actually, I’d never write horror or anything with with lots of violence. I don’t like to read either and it would just mess up my mind to try.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. What a fun question, Jacqui. I like reading memoirs but I don’t think I could write one. I think that takes a special talent that I Do Not have. You know my feelings about fantasy. Ha ha. Unlike you, I don’t think I could write historical fiction (all that research! Ugh! Lol). But I love reading it. Can’t wait to dive into yours.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Interesting choices, Jacqui. Sometimes, I see memoirs as a bit egotistical, but I’ve read some that have been great and enlightening, such as “Greenlights” by Matthew McConaughey. I don’t think I could ever successfully write horror. I couldn’t get into the darkness that much.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I just answered this question on another blog. I went with war stories. I don’t know enough about how things really work in combat, and the horrors of war aren’t something I want to immerse myself in for a long period of time. I never considered memoir. I have to add that to my list. I don’t really shout details of my private life from the rooftops. (I don’t really whisper those details, either.)

    Thanks for the thought-provoking question, Jacqui.

    Liked by 1 person

    • War stories have a huge group of dedicated readers, but you better get it right! My Twenty-four Days, featuring the warship, USS Bunker Hill–people emailed me about a stairway being in the wrong place or some detail of the electronics were wrong! Yikes! No wonder I switched to prehistoric.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s why I seldom dabble in historical time periods. People love to point out phrases that weren’t used then or clothing styles that weren’t in fashion or weapons… You get it. Prehistoric does sound safer in that regard.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I’ve had a few people point out stuff they think I got wrong, which sends me off to research. I have yet to find I’m wrong, but because there are so many unknowns 2 mya, I have no doubt the commenter read his thought somewhere.

          Liked by 1 person

  17. For many years I was marketing and business development. Writing company stories helped me begin my author career in non-fiction writing memoir. Memoir was hard because I had to dig deep and bear my soul of my journey as a cancer survivor. Good fiction to me has stories with characters who feel deeply. My heart was ready for fiction. I enjoy reading thrillers, but I like writing fantasy, adding thriller scenes. My novel, “Einstein’s Compass a YA Time Traveler Adventure” is sci-fi, historical fiction, and fantasy with danger mixed in. My next book is mythological fantasy, “The Mystical Talisman of Atlantis”. I love history. I like Terry Pratchett and Jodi Taylor’s books who cross many genres. Adding a fantastical story around Plato’s mythical characters of Atlantis is a lot of fun. I do not like to read horror books. I added horror to some of the scenes in my books but could not do a vampire story. Romance is a big genre. Not my genre either.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Excellent points about memoirs, Jacqui!

    Like science fiction, the realms of fantasy vary, but because of the intricate world building, few novels in this genre keep me engaged. Thus, I gravitate away from fantasy toward the visceral thrillers, most providing the emotional boost of excitement. I also love the intellectual challenge of solving puzzles, so mysteries remains high on my reading and writing list.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Same here – I agree about memoir. But my worst nightmare would be to attempt horror. I know that wasn’t one of the choices, but that’s what it would be. Fantasy is just not me either, but I must say, the few fantasy books I’ve read have been excellent. Don’t think I could write it though.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. I would be with you on fantasy. The advantage I see of memoir over auto-biography is that in memoir you can be more selective and write about one aspect of your life as opposed to trying to capture everything (which is impossible and maybe why you don’t see people writing auto-biographies today).

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Pingback: #IWSG Least Favorite Genre — – uwerolandgross

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