Round and round we go...

Friday, November 30, 2007 0 Comments A+ a-

I'm taking a short break from editing my high fantasy romance-which I guess could be titled a paranormal romance in the strict sense of the term-and it got me thinking about paranormal romance vs. urban fantasy (which, I believe, was called contemporary fantasy in the 90s).

Now there have been many a discussion on this very same topic from the forums at Absolute Write here and here,
to industry blogs & journals like Publisher's Weekly and author blogs like Jackie Kessler's website blog.

It got me thinking that everything I knew about the two wasn't exactly set in stone and, like everything in this business, it is highly subjective depending on the person. What I did find though was this fabulous blog post by an author who defines paranormal romance really well. Perhaps the clearest I've ever seen a definition.

It got me to thinking about Cimmerian City. Earlier before it was released I called it a science fiction paranormal thriller... then the paranormal dropped so that it was a science fiction thriller. But even that didn't quite cover everything because it does entail some dark fantasy elements. The coolest description by far that I've seen is from Mandy's review of Cimmerian City over at Rogues and Romances where she named it a "futuristic urban paranormal". Ooh, gives ya shivers, don't it? The book is definitely takes place in a futuristic time but not too far in the future that it's completely alien to us. Looking back we have come pretty far in technology although much of it has been recycled. Not to mention, we aren't where we should be socially, economically and technology wise according to people growing up in the 50s. So much of it is pretty contemporary although it deals with paranormal elements especially as the series progresses.

So in light of this rant, I realized how much of a pain it is to label your book, especially when it crosses so many genres. As a reader I never thought about the labeling of the books I liked, if I saw a book that sounded interesting, had a cool eye catching cover (yes, I'm a sucker for covers) and had a great blurb I would definitely take it home with me to read...after flipping through it, of course. However as a writer, I'm all for genre busting labels that stretch to the next corner.

Speculative romantic urban paranormal thriller. Ooh, I like the sound of that!