Imagine going into a bookstore or library with no clearly-defined sections. The task of locating a book you like would take on nightmarish proportions. Books, music, and many other art forms are broken down into genres, so we can locate the type of reading material we love.
When I began writing The Moses Conspiracy, genre didn't enter my mind. All I knew was I had a novel to write. After a few years of dealing with craft issues, I started hearing things like, "What genre is this?"
Editors and agents all had an opinion. To my horror, one person labeled it, "Sci-Fi." This genre evoked scenes with aliens and spaceships, which definitely did not fit my book.
Others labeled it, "political, futuristic, or fantasy." I decided if anyone was going to categorize this book it was going to be me. So, I began presenting it as Christian Speculative Fiction because it takes place in 2025 and presented a what-if scenario.
The problem with this designation was the staggering number of sub-genres under it. My publisher decided to label it futuristic/fantasy for the various outlets.
In fact, The Moses Conspiracy is a cross-genre work. It's futuristic, but also suspenseful. It's a mystery and has some Amish characters. In my opinion, a lot of people could relate to this book and enjoy the various elements.
Let's face it, our lives are not segmented into genres. People interact with various ethnic groups and face challenging life situations. It's one reason I read many genres. Think about all those new synapses growing in my brain when I open to different reading material.
I'm curious. What are your thoughts about reading/writing different genres or cross-genre works?