Sunday, February 14, 2010

My Niche

I have been thinking a lot about what I previously referred to as my New Year's Epiphany about my writing. My first completed novel, Always Faithful, was about a woman facing both the empty nest and retirement. My second completed novel, The Way Home, was about a middle aged woman who returns to her home town after many years away and has to reorient her life. They were early efforts, but I loved writing both of them and I am crazy about the characters in both stories.

After that I got sidetracked, experimenting with genre fiction: two romances, a "Florida Fiction/mystery", and a fantasy. I learned a whole lot from the experience of writing each of those stories* and  I am a much better writer today for having written them. It seems that, by pushing myself out of my comfort zone, I somehow ratcheted up my confidence in my writing in a way I can't describe, but I can feel when I'm drafting new content. Perhaps it was just the practice.

Now, I'm pulling back and refocusing my efforts. I can't do everything. I don't want to be a romance writer or a fantasy writer. I enjoyed writing those two romances, and I think the fantasy novel I wrote for NaNoWriMo in 2009 contains some of the best writing I have ever done.

It was all a great learning experience, but I want to write contemporary fiction for and about women. That's where I want to focus my publishing efforts. I may occasionally write a genre novel for kicks, but I plan to make women's fiction my main focus.

I feel as though I'm back on track now.


*Some of these stories are available for free on my  Smashwords.


  1. I go through the same type of things. I wrote a romance (chick-lit-type) novel a few years ago, then switched to screenplays. I shot two short films last summer, then got burned out on that and I'm trying my hand (and having a blast) at YA fiction. Good luck!

  2. Why does women's fiction appeal to you over the other genre? Just curious.

  3. Thanks for the good wishes, Lisa. I'd love to write a screenplay but don't have the patience!

    Rebecca, I guess women's fiction appeals to me because I'm a post-menopausal woman who's discovering some amazing things about this time of life. I've been inspired by older women my whole life, and now I'm on the threshold of becoming one. I guess I find the process of metamorphosis interesting.

    That's my story for now.

    Subject to change, of course.

  4. Niches are inescapable, aren't they? For a while my niche was having no niche. Gaaah!


  5. I like the idea of having no niche. That gives you perfect freedom to try whatever you want. I have experimented a lot in recent years. Now, I want to knuckle down and focus on one area -- at least until I take a notion to try something new again.