Friday, October 5, 2012

Genre Attack

It is strange when I suddenly realise that what I am writing fits within a genre I didn't expect. It happened with Steeplechase (Text Publishing due May 2013). I was writing this book and I thought it was just a straight literary fiction. It was only sometime in the second draft that I realised I was writing a ghost story of sorts, not actual ghosts but the ghosts of your past. I started to read gothic ghost stories and suddenly the whole book fell into place.

This next book, Abstinence had the same journey. I wrote the first draft referencing classic erotic texts and it was truly an erotic novel. That was it's genre. Facing the second draft I knew something was not quite right. It seems what I have written is a sexual superhero story. I blame my obsession with Wilhelm Reich, of course, but now that I come back to the book, the Orgone energy thread is the strongest trope in the book. My heroine is a sexual superhero. She is Barbarella, she is Batman with a cunt. I am learning to embrace this now. In my re-draft I am upping the superpowers. This is not a genre I am used to. The comics I enjoy are more Chris Ware than Marvel or DC. Perhaps I should introduce a costume for her at some point. Oh dear. What have I done?