Genre tips

#AtoZChallenge: Genres–Wuxia

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:



fantasy tales set within the martial arts traditions and philosophies of China.

Tipsa to z

  1. Traditionally fantasy so consider that as your audience.
  2. If you’re adventurous, you can expand your story into such diverse art forms as Chinese opera, manhua, television dramas, films, and video.
  3. Most stories in this genre are set in ancient China, certainly pre-modern.
  4. The name refers to a martial artist that follows the code of “xia”–maybe a swordsman though it doesn’t require s/he wield a sword.
  5. Heroes often come from lower social classes, not nobility.
  6. Heroes follow a code of chivalry that requires they redress wrongs, fight for righteousness, remove oppressors, and right past wrongs.
  7. Many start with a young man wronged early in life who sets out to right the tragedy with martial arts’ skills.
  8. The value system can be summed up: “He treasures the state, friendship, duty, promises, kindness, vengeance, honor, and righteousness more than his own life.”
  9. Here’s a quote from Sima Qian that explains the character well: “He is honest in words, effective in action, faithful in keeping promises, fearless in offering his own life to free the righteous from bondage.”

Popular Books

I left the names of the books out because often, they were in Chinese. If this genre interests you (like it does me), search for the author and you’ll find their writing.

  1. books by Jin Yong (like The Smiling, Proud Wanderer)
  2. stories by Gu Long
  3. stories by Huang Yi
  4. books by Liang Yusheng (like Qiijian Xia Tianshan)
  5. Wen Ruian
  6. Liang Yusheng
  7. Sima Ziyan
  8. Xiao Yi

BTW: If the book you’ve written fits into any X-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 W Genres:

Copyright ©2022 – All rights reserved.

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. 

78 thoughts on “#AtoZChallenge: Genres–Wuxia

  1. This is a new word for me and now I will have to learn how to pronounce it! I remember when Kung Fu, I think that was the name, was a series on TV, set in the American West. I was still in school (Jr or Sr High) when it came out–only later I realized how badly the Chinese had been treated in the West.

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is a very cool genre I doubt many westerners read. My son loves it but he lived in Japan for 4 years. I was desperate for a genre that started with W. Serendipity, I think. Or God’s hand.

      The Chinese also have a nice genre that starts with X that no one has ever heard of. But–did I mention it starts with X?


  2. Hi Jacqui – I’ve never heard of Wuxia … well, well, well – still … leave me out of fantasy …

    I have recently bought, because at some stage it will interest me and I will read them – ‘Chinese Fables and Folk Stories’ by Mary Hayes Davis and Chow-Leung – with an introduction by Yin-Chwang Wang Tsen-Zan …. published by University Press of the Pacific – Honolulu, Hawaii.

    Apparently this was the first book of Chinese stories ever printed in English, published in 1908 by Yin-Chwang Wang Tsen-Zan of the University of Chicago.

    Well there’s parts of the publisher’s name that fits into your XYZ … but I’ll leave it to you … cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I recently read a Wuxia middle-grade book (I can’t remember the title as it’s on my Kindle). I wasn’t familiar with this specific genre, but your description fits the category.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I really enjoy this genre, Jacqui, especially when it includes lots of realism in the worldbuilding. I love feeling like I’ve been transported into another culture, even when the story qualifies as fantasy. I’m not surprised that the authors are from Asia, as that kind of authenticity would be hard to do otherwise. Great post.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hey, I saw this one yesterday when I was putting up ads. I wondered what it was and how it was related to fantasy. I “made a mental” note to check it out and just remembered it now. I guess there’s no need anymore, ha.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Pingback: #AtoZChallenge: Genres–Wuxia — – uwerolandgross

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