Goodreads Question on the Genre of The Mason List

Goodreads Question on the Genre of The Mason List

**Goodreads Question**
“When writing The Mason List, did you worry about not fitting specifically into a certain genre?”

I always planned to write a “romance” book but I wasn’t really aiming for one genre or another. I know that can often be bad for marketing a book. What Genre is The Mason List? Well…it’s a Contemporary, Coming-of-Age Romance that crosses both Young Adult and New Adult with splash of Chick Lit.

I read all sorts of genre’s. I think for me, all of those blend together in my head. I didn’t have one genre in mind when I set out to write the story. I was just telling the story. Alex’s backstory took over a large portion of theme. That wasn’t the intention but it became 50% of the story.

My core concept: I wanted a story that actually showed the characters together as kids. I didn’t want the story to start as adults with a few sentences that indicated they grew up together. I wanted the reader to feel like they grew up with the characters. To me, the story of Jess and Alex only existed because of the adventures they had together as children. It wasn’t always perfect and they didn’t always make the best choices. But they were together and the reader got to experience those twists and turns along the way.

I worried when I released The Mason List that people would have issues with the first half of the book being told from the young kid perspective since I was marketing in the romance section of Amazon that is full of traditional style New Adult books. I say traditional, because there’s certain elements that are typically present in most New Adult books.

However, most people have embraced the book as a whole. They loved the epic style and didn’t have a problem with the page count. There’s been a few who didn’t like the first half – and I’ve had people who loved the first half but not the last half. I think some of the dislike does come from the jump in genres. I also know that everyone does not like the same books. I’m okay with it. I had fun writing The Mason List. And at the end of the day, I know the published story is the one that I wanted to tell for Alex and Jess. I stayed true to my original core concept.

On The Rack: The Thornbirds

On The Rack: The Thornbirds

The Thornbirds by Colleen McCullough

Flashback Friday from the Vault….

The Thornbirds CoverThe Thornbirds crosses into many genres. However, the book is by far my favorite “epic” novel. The term “epic” means several different things when it comes to romantic fiction. For me, “epic” involves the journey of the main character through many years and often decades; the beautiful and tragic, and the love and heartache that encompasses their lives.

This epic story, set in the beautiful Australian Outback, follows Meggie Cleary from the age of four until her children are grown.  The third person point of view includes Meggie and often switches to those around her and then eventually on to that of her daughter Justine and son Dane.

The novel was quite controversial when it first hit the book stores. A love story that crosses so many different forbidden elements with the age gap of Meggie and Ralph all the way to his religious affiliation.   Yes, that’s right. Ralph de Briccassart is a Catholic priest. Their story is one of many complex levels that twists right into your gut leaving the notion that epic love is epic pain. Hence, the thornbird.

Reason for being on the Rack:

I have owned the paperback of this novel since high school. Publication date is 1977, the same year that I was born. This copy has made approximately seven moves. In all these years, I have read the book at least ten or more times. The back cover is gone and the final page is almost torn in half. This book is either well read or I store my books in terrible places. Maybe a little of both.

Why do I love The Thornbirds?

The Thornbirds InsideI think the poetic quote at the beginning sums it up very nicely. It’s the meaning behind the title. The meaning behind the “epic” story. In some ways, The Thornbirds is my Anna Karenina.

The Thornbirds is available on Amazon in the friendly Kindle format that includes the back page unlike my well used copy.