Genres I Love Writing

Horror and Science Fiction are two of my favorite genres. There is a vast array of subgenres under them to immerse my imagination into. I have always enjoyed books set in haunted places and dystopian futuristic cities. But there are some subgenres that I especially enjoy writing.

Horror

Quiet Horror

I love writing fiction that goes bump in the night. There doesn’t have to be someone with a machete running after the characters. It is subtle, not graphic, and yet it creates fear in the mind of the reader.

Supernatural Thriller

As opposed to the subtleties of quiet horror, I also enjoy writing fiction about monsters that create fear for the characters. As readers, we can love them or hate them. But one cannot deny that writing about supernatural monsters is the most thrilling aspect of being a writer.

Science Fiction

Cyberpunk science fiction

As we enter the 2020s, with Sophia becoming the 1st robot to receive a citizenship and a UN title, the high-tech future isn’t near, it’s here. It is one of the reasons I love writing the cyberpunk subgenre. It walks on a tightrope between believable and unbelievable worlds.

social science fiction

Since I tend to write character-driven fiction, it should come as no surprise that this is one of my favorite writing subgenres. Creating high-tech civilizations on different planets and galaxies can be a fun aspect of writing science fiction. But the best part is when I write how the characters react to the challenges thrown by their environment.

Horror and Science Fiction are not just about ghosts and spaceships. When I am writing such genres, I get to travel through the terrifying and utopian worlds at the same time. 

Gritty Girls in a Pretty Pickle

I began 2020 with Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter. It has been a while since I have read crime thrillers. And let me tell you this one scared the pants out of me. Estranged sisters, a grieving father, and a perfect husband. It was like a wonderful castle in the air that began shattering piece by piece. Karin Slaughter had me hooked.

I had to know more about the mastermind behind the thriller. I found a podcast where she talked about writing Pretty Girls and her life as an author. 

Now I would love to share some of the juicy nuggets of inspiration.

Thrills & Chills

I always write horror stories with fantasy or science fiction elements induced in it. Personally, I find it easier to create humane monsters than monstrous humans in fiction.

Thriller is about hiding things in plain sight.

– Karin Slaughter, (88 Cups Of Tea)

In the podcast, Karin Slaughter says that she feels anesthetized to shocks as she has read a lot of crime fiction. She also talks to people working in the field for her research. So, crime stories generally don’t shock her. But it does make her feel sad that they are still happening.

On the edge of lightness & dark

When Karin Slaughter is writing about something dark in a book, she balances it with some sort of lightness.

Remember to have a balance between lightness and dark, no matter what story you are writing.

– Karin Slaughter, (88 Cups of Tea)

In the podcast, she pointed out that unrelenting darkness isn’t the kind of book most people read. They want to see the character’s humanity, character’s reaction to the story and see something such as survival.

Flaws are fabulous

As writers, we love putting our characters through the wringer. Sometimes the goodness in them shines. But no character is perfect. As human beings, it is the flaws that make the characters endearing.

Karin Slaughter doesn’t make her characters superheroes since people in real life are a blend of good & bad. There is no perfect person. There is no wholly good & wholly bad person.

Writing Pretty Girls

I read Pretty Girls in 3 days and it has been a long while since a crime thriller book has hooked me this way. The main character Claire was a complicated woman. She is beautiful, thin & athletic, has a wealthy husband. Her life is perfect & you think she is going to be a certain type, but she is a different one. In this book, Karin Slaughter has shown Claire’s prickly side as well.

Characters’ voices should be distinct. No matter which page you open, you should recognize the character from their voice.

– Karin Slaughter, (88 Cups of Tea)

She also needed the beat of the father’s letters as the letters play out at key points in the book that gives clues to the next chapter. What amazed me the most about this book was that she did not have an outline for it, and she had written it in 12 weeks. But she had thought about it for months before writing it.

Writing Pains

We all have our writing pains. So does Karin Slaughter. In the podcast, she mentioned that it’s not the story that’s the hard part. But it’s figuring out how to implement the story & how the characters will express the story.

The key for any writer is figuring out how to express that story through characters that people want to spend time with.

– Karin Slaughter, (88 Cups of Tea)

As readers, we want to find out what the character wants to do next. That’s the difficult part.

Steps to Success

I love different genres whether it is fantasy, slipstream, science fiction, or pure horror. But it has taken me a long time to write my stories without limiting myself to a single genre.

Karin Slaughter loved reading crime fiction. But she didn’t think that she could write crime fiction. So, she was writing historical fiction in the beginning. Everything opened up when she wrote her 1st book. The 1st draft was done in 17 days. But she got a ton of rejections from agents. It crushed her when the historical novel didn’t go through.

Her proudest moments were when she was nominated. Even though she sold a gazillion books, she was always happy to be appreciated. Success for her is being able to tell the stories she wants to tell.

You can check blogs about authors that inspire me:

You can check the whole podcast at 88 Cups Of Tea

My 2020 Writing Vision

I do not believe in New Year’s resolutions. But I do believe in New Year’s goals. Last year, I did meet some of the goals that I had set for myself. I launched my blog site. I wrote 17000 words during NaNoWriMo (which I consider a personal win). I also finished Act-1 in my Science Fiction project. So this year, I have set myself some SMART goals which I would love to share with you all.

1. Blog twice a month 

Last summer, I started ‘Blurred Thoughts on Page’ or as I like to call it BTop. Since then, I have posted 7 blog articles that included pieces about my writing journey, the authors that influenced me with their journey, and the books I read in 2019.

This year, I will be posting 2 blogs every month. One about my writing journey and one about my reading journey.

2. Write short stories 

I always have a ton of ideas bouncing in my head. But I don’t put them on the page nearly enough. This year I want to write more stories so I can feel productive and accomplished. But also, they will help me progress further as a writer.

3. Complete Science Fiction project 

My Science Fiction project has gone through a lot of methods. But the one thing I realized last year was that I tend to write in spurts.
I switch between plotting and pantsing. Some days I know where I am heading. Some days I like to be surprised. Plans always have the chance of going awry. So, this year I am giving myself 3 months on the Science Fiction project.
Whatever material I can put on the page till March end will decide my progress in that project.

4. Pitch fiction & blog posts to editors 

I will keep submitting short fiction as each word counts when you look at it. This year I will also do the scary part of pitching blog posts to editors. It is going to be interesting to find out what I can accomplish through pitching blogs this year.

5. Be consistent on social media 

I will be active on Instagram sharing my writing and reading journey with everyone. It is a great platform to connect with writers.