A dearth of genres has exploded in the literary world. I write this not only because it allows me to use the word “dearth,” but because it has prompted a stunning new epiphany: You can create your own book genre and make big bucks.
The book world is littered (in some cases, I mean that literally) with genres. With an explosion of self-publishing and burgeoning niches, it’s a literary genre-o-rama, with Chick lit, Sci-Fi, Young Adult, Comic Novel, Erotica, Historical Fiction, Mathematical Fiction, Memoir, Philosophical Horror, Space Opera, Military, Cyberpunk, Alien Invasion – these are just a few of the many I discovered through exhaustive research (i.e. Wikipedia.)
Instead of trying to play catch-up with all these other genres, I pondered the eternal question posed by all writers: “Why not create my own literary genre so I could write one book that would make millions and then never have to do anything every again while still being regarded as a god?”
By developing my own thing, I wouldn’t be playing catch-up in such a cluttered marketplace. Plus it gives me something to write about, since I wouldn’t know where to begin with the Space Opera genre.
I brewed a cup of coffee, sat down at my computer, and thought about subjects in which I have expertise and that would translate into a compelling genre. This took all of about five minutes, as I really don’t know much about anything, and I’m an expert in even less than that. My list included the following:
- Folding laundry
- Grocery shopping
- Organizing closets
- Making snide comments
- Ridiculing my wiener (dog)
The first three skillsets made me sound like a housewife from the 50s. The fourth was definitely something to be proud of, although it generates more punches in the mouth than revenue. The fifth you would understand if you met my annoying wiener (dog).
However, if I combined all five into a bold new literary genre, newfound legions of readers would flock to the writings of Greg Mischio. And so the hard work began on my latest, and soon to be greatest, epiphany.
Anal-Retentive Smartass Animal Taunterist
I dubbed my new genre Anal-Retentive Smartass Animal Taunterist. I gave myself extra-points for creating the word “taunterist,” which combines the words “taunt” and “erist.”
My first book was about a writer with a strange compulsion to fold laundry, do all the family shopping, and make snide comments about his wiener (dog). The big plot twist involves a meteorite crashing in the writer’s backyard, from which aliens emerge who have hubcaps for faces.
This sounds kind of formulaic, especially the part about the aliens with hubcaps for faces. Like we haven’t heard that one before. But I thought it would be a novel approach for a, um, novel.
The book was a halfway decent read, at least according to me. The traditional publishing world didn’t think so. No one would give my book a look. So I self-published, knowing full well an innovator sometimes has to innovate alone.
For two years, I promoted, marketed and worked diligently to sell my book. And wouldn’t you know it? My new genre took hold.
A small group of fans really took a shine to my genre. Smart guys, too. Doctors, wearing white lab coats. They offered me a nice little room with padded walls, where I could spend all day writing novels in my new Anal-Retentive Smartass Taurnterist genre.
My family thought it was a terrific idea. They signed some papers (which I’m assuming was the lease), and said, “There! Now you’re committed.” I’ve always been committed to being a writer, so I was happy to make it official.
My next goal is to sell the movie rights to my new literary genre, and it turns out I’ve got prospects. The doctors actually know a ton of people in Hollywood, many of whom have padded rooms of their own. I’m on my way!