How to Genre-Hop Successfully

This is the last in my genre-hopping series. If you missed the others, click on the following links:

Is Genre-Hopping for You?

Genre-Hopping Benefits and Consequences

Genre-Hopping and Author Branding

Despite all the cons we’ve seen with genre-hopping, it can be done successfully. Take a look.

One way romance authors can successfully genre-hop (or subgenre-hop) is with category romances (Harlequin/Silhouette). The authors could subgenre-hop with two different category lines. There’s also the opportunity to stick with one category line and branch out to a single title publisher.

While starting with category romances and moving on to a single title publisher is fairly common, even if that means leaving category altogether, the opposite can work as well. Bestselling author Roxanne St. Claire started with a single title publishing house and hopped to category. This meant less marketing investment with her category romance, and the readers tended to be loyal line buyers, so she didn’t have to worry about branding herself in this new subgenre as much as if she’d switched to a different single title genre. Plus, the high print runs for the category lines meant more exposure fast, but it didn’t necessarily stop there. Many readers who liked her category romances checked out her single titles as well. Her agent recommended releasing a category romance one month after a single title release because of the crossover readers. So, just as the single title’s momentum started to die, it got another boast from category readers who crossed over to read her single title.

Another key to successful genre-hopping for writers of all genres is to have the personality to fit this type of schedule. You’ll need to juggle multiple projects at a variety of stages, with different editors, deadlines, and writing styles. Each genre and subgenre has it’s own style. Your voice will come through regardless of the genre, but things like pacing, certain phrasing, tone, reader expectations, and taboos should be considered. In order to successfully genre-hop, you’ll need to be organized, flexible, and ready to work. It’s not easy turning out several books a year, but it’s likely that would be expected of you.

Are you convinced? Is genre-hopping for you? Would you stick to single titles or would a category line join the mix?

I’m taking some time away from the Internet and my computer, so you won’t hear from me again until November 5. See you then.

Lynnette Labelle
www.lynnettelabelle.com
www.labelleseditorialservices.com

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