By Cory Dale
Remember when the dividing lines between genres were clearly defined? Fantasy. Science Fiction. Mystery. Romance. Bookstores had to know which section to shelve the books. There were no “in-between” areas of the store. Readers needed to easily find which section to browse in order to find the genre they wanted.
Less than twenty-five years ago, I remember catching the occasional hybrid book and I’d be ecstatic to have found something new and different. I’d search for more like it, but these special books were rare. I wanted my mystery mixed with things that go bump in the night and a little romance thrown in for spice. I found a ghostly tale or two, maybe a mystery with a psychic, but I was still hungry for a satisfying story that had all the yummy stuff I wanted to gorge on for my reading pleasure.
Once the Internet became as common as the household TV, it became easier to locate books that fell within my reading tastes. I was writing by then and working on projects that appealed to my craving for mixed genres. That was all fine and good until I explored the possibility of getting published.
About fifteen years ago, I attended a writers’ conference and sat in on a panel of a half-dozen editors who fielded attendees’ questions. I asked for their take on crossing genres. They all looked at me like I’d just sprouted a third eye in the middle of my forehead. That’s when one of them explained—and quite patiently, too—how important it is for a book to clearly fall within only one genre category. She told me: “Bookstores don’t have a section called ‘what the *bleep* is this’.” And she didn’t say bleep.
Her answer didn’t stop me from writing what I wanted to write. And it didn’t stop hundreds of other authors from pursuing an insatiable desire to create stories from a widening pool of mixed genre possibilities. It took a few years, but we have finally arrived in a readers’ paradise of genre hybrids.
That got me to thinking of all the genre combinations I’ve seen, as well as the ones I haven’t. Not only are we seeing mixed genres, we’re seeing the gamut of centuries-old mythology and folklore from around the globe being used in contemporary stories. We’re seeing fairytales retold, old legends renewed, and monsters of all kinds getting a literary facelift. I love it!
Now we can find not only a mix of two genres–like romance mixes well with just about anything–but we’re seeing triple and quadruple genre mash-ups. And not just in books. Look at all the amazing television shows and movies that are available today.
The only genres I doubt can be mixed are erotica with inspirational. Unless I’m missing something, I think they contradict each other. Please correct me if I’m wrong.
Demon Fare is a beloved mash-up project of mine that fuses alternate history and steampunk with urban fantasy. My agent tried hard to find it a home with a New York publisher, but no one was willing to take a risk on something so different. I believe in this book, and the characters have many more stories to tell, so I’ve made Demon Fare the first book in my Spawnstertown Chronicles. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I loved writing it.
What’s your favorite genre mash-up? Can you think of any genre fusions you’d like to see done?
Thank you for reading!
About the Author
Karen Duvall, who wrote Demon Fare as Cory Dale, lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and four incredibly spoiled pets. Karen is represented by Elizabeth Winick Rubenstein of the McIntosh & Otis Literary Agency. Her Knight’s Curse series was published by Harlequin Luna in 2011 and 2012, and her post apocalyptic novella, Sun Storm, appeared in Luna’s ‘Til The World Ends anthology in 2013.
Karen is also a professional graphic designer who designs book covers and book interiors for self-published authors, and creates original 3D graphics for computer gaming. Demon Fare is the first book in her Spawnstertown Chronicles.
About Demon Fare
In an alternate history New York City—one hundred and fifty years after an earthquake from hell nearly destroyed the planet—the twenty-first century clings to an industrial age. Steam engines rule, and demon-powered technology is the up and coming thing. Henry Paine, a half-demon taxi driver, is the go-to guy for just the right demon to possess your machine and automate any mechanical gizmo with or without an engine. The creatures are tame as pets. Or at least they have been… until now.
Wanda Snow is an exorcist who grudgingly admits to having a few drops of demon blood herself. She’s come to New York to rid the city of demonic vermin as well as any other demons that get in her way. Wanda and Henry are naturally at odds, but the two are forced to become partners in a mutual goal to round up the rogue demons biting the Big Apple and take down the sinister tyrant who started it all.
Buy Links for Demon Fare:
Google Play – https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Cory_Dale_Demon_Fare?id=lZi9BQAAQBAJ
Kobo – http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/demon-fare
Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Demon-Fare-Spawnstertown-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B00QD8QXDQ
Barnes and Noble – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/demon-fare-cory-dale/1120916649?ean=2940150052710
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There are3 EBook copes and 2 print copies of Demon Fare up for grabs. click here for details!