By Karen Gross
What do they mean by "genre"? There are two distinct lists that cover the area of genres, writing genres and fiction genres. The first describes what the writing's purpose is and the other describes a targeted group of readers of specific fiction. You won't find an Expository section in your local bookstore; Romance and Horror sections are more likely to be displayed. When a publisher asks if your memoirs are Descriptive or Narrative he's searching for the category that best describes your writing, not the story.
Let's take them one by one. First the Writing Genres:
Descriptive writing appears almost everywhere and is often included in other genres, such as in a descriptive introduction of a character in a narrative. This genre attempts to describe a person, place or thing in vivid detail.
Expository writing appears in and is not limited to letters, newsletters, definitions, instructions, guidebooks, catalogues, newspaper articles, magazine articles, manuals, pamphlets, reports and research papers. The goal of this genre is to give explanation or directions to the reader.
Narrative writing appears in and is not limited to novels, short stories, biographies, autobiographies, historical accounts, essays, poems, and plays. The goal of this genre is to tell a story of an experience, event, or sequence of events while holding the reader's interest.
Persuasive writing appears in and is not limited to speeches, letters to the editor, editorials, advertisements, award nominations, sales letters, petitions, scholarly writing, and opinion pieces. The goal of this genre is to give an opinion in an attempt to convince the reader that this point of view is valid or tries to persuade the reader to take a specific action.
Poetry appears almost everywhere, and examples include haiku, couplet, quatrain, limerick, ballad, lyrics, sonnet, etc. Poetic writing is a written art form that helps the writer express an imaginative awareness and is arranged to create a specific emotional response, sometimes employing the use of repetition, meter, and rhyme.
The goal of technical writing is to clearly communicate a select piece of information to a targeted reader or group of readers for a particular purpose in such a way that the subject can readily be understood. Examples of technical writing include, warranties, contracts, blueprints, etc.
It is now readily apparent that Writing Genres describe the purpose of a piece of writing.
Now we'll look at the fiction genres. These determine certain elements that readers have come to expect.
Mystery/Suspense/Horror is a fiction category for stories, usually realistic, about a mysterious/horrible event that is not explained or a crime that is not solved until the end of the story to keep the reader in suspense. Detective and Crime Novels fall into the Mystery/Suspense genre.
Poetic writing is a written art form that helps the writer express an imaginative awareness and is arranged to create a specific emotional response, sometimes employing the use of repetition, meter, and rhyme. Books of Poetry are frequently published with a theme that all selected poems share.
Fantasy fiction contains elements that are not realistic, such as talking animals, magical powers, etc. The Hobbit and The Dragon Lance Chronicles are classic examples of fantasy genre.
Science Fiction stories include futuristic technology -- a blend of scientific-fact and fictional elements. Star Trek is an example of the science fiction genre.
Historical Fiction stories take place in a particular time period in the past. Often the basic setting is real, but the characters are fictional. Historical Fiction can cover any time period. "Memoirs of a Geisha" falls into the Historical Fiction genre.
Myths are stories that explain something about the world and involve gods or other supernatural beings. Although, myths are fictional stories, in most libraries they are found in the non-fiction section of the library in the 290s.
3. Science Fiction
So there you have it...writing genres describe the purpose of the writing and the fiction genres describe a targeted writing market with pre-supposed elements.
About the author: Karen Gross is an article writer for the Affiliate Work Home resource web site. Please visit our web site for more information and advice on work from home!
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