Why I Write What I Write: An IWSG Post

Hello there, my writing friends.

Nice to see you guys. I don’t know about you guys, but I’m glad Spring is finally here. Not to complain about seasons, but I’m glad Winter is over. It wasn’t so much about the temperature; it was more about the rain. And mix it in with the chilly wind. It was quite miserable. I suppose I should be grateful. Some people had it worse. I will say, however, that I’m not looking forward to the pollen and the allergic attacks that will ensue. I can do without them.

Anyway, let’s get to business. It’s the first Wednesday of April, which means it’s IWSG Day. The day where the first Wednesday of the month, writers share about their writing journey. But before I continue, I must apologize for last month. I was going through a funk and I didn’t have it in me to write anything. But now I’m back, ready to go. Much thanks to this month’s co-hosts: J. H. Moncrieff, Natalie Aguirre, Patsy Collins, and Chemist Ken.

Today, I’m going to share something I really haven’t talked much about in my writing. My preferred genre to write. Recently, I got suggestions to participate in collaborations. Sounds good, right? But after learning the details and reading others’ input, I decided it wasn’t for me. (Well, I opted out of one; I’m undecided on another.) The reason being was I was uncertain how my genre of choice would fit in with the collaboration.

For those who don’t know already, I write Contemporary Fiction. At least, that’s the best way to define my writing. I know it shouldn’t be a big deal. There are many on social media who support my genre of choice. Some have read my works and have liked them. I suppose it’s my insecurities telling me that my genre would not fit in with what everyone else is writing. It’s not the popular genre anymore. I suppose if I was writing a novel, it might seem its time has passed.

Still, I love the genre. It speaks to me more. It occurs to me, however, that I’ve never really explained why I love writing Contemporary Fiction. Well today, I’m going to share why I feel drawn to the genre. Now this is not to debate the advantages of one over another. This is merely to give you guys insight on

One, I can write the stories I want. It doesn’t have to be about what I know. And those who know me know I hate that piece of advice with a passion. I have tried writing in other genres, but I got discouraged because I believed I was following the rules. I’m reminded, however, that there are no real rules to genre fiction; just guidelines that can be bent.

The same is true of Contemporary Fiction. I can create stories and characters that are as real or unreal as I want. With Contemporary Fiction, I feel I’m sharing my real life experience, even if certain details are blemishes of the truth. Still, I’m free to be me. I can give characters my voice. I can write in the style that’s authentic to me.

Two, most of the stories I’ve read are Contemporary. This might be a fault more than a reason. I say that because I didn’t read a lot in my youth; just stuck with what was required. This was especially the case in high school and college. However, as I read and learned about the books and their authors, I got a sense of what it was like in those times. This is especially true in taking literature courses in college. Caribbean Literature. Gothic Literature. British Literature. These courses in particular gave me introspective into what it was like to write in that time. And there are themes that still resonate today.

And finally, I don’t have to think too much about the genre. Now, there is some thought when it comes to core elements like believable conflict and relatable characters. Still, I don’t have to think so much about inspiration for them. I can look out my backyard, have a conversation with a neighbor, read a paper, or watch a TV show. There are many sources to draw from and I don’t have to always rely on Google or Pinterest for research.

At the end of the day, writers live to tell stories. We’re all using our imaginations to weave the fantastical into the ordinary. Essentially, that’s what I’m doing. I’m just deciding to be more forthcoming about my real life, to an extent. And I feel the best way to do so is through Contemporary Fiction. I don’t have to sugarcoat everything about my life. There are part I can, and probably should, withhold from my readers. In the grand scheme of things, Contemporary works best for me because it is what I know.

What about you? What genre speaks to you the most? Why do like to write in that genre? Let me know in the comments.

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