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Two basic elements comprise every romance novel:
A central love story and an emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending.
In a romance, the lovers who risk and struggle for each other and their relationship are rewarded with emotional justice and unconditional love.
Mild romance: love story without steamy sex scenes
Contemporary Romance: Takes place in the author’s contemporary time period.
Historical Romance: Takes place at least 30 years in the author’s past.
Paranormal Romance: Contains fantasy elements.
Erotica: Plot revolves around sex.
Epic/High Fantasy: Set in created worlds.
Low Fantasy: Set in our world, but with magic.
Urban Fantasy: A type of Low Fantasy usually set specifically in a city that typically follows a jaded protagonist either in law enforcement or a vigilante as they encounter magical creatures.
Historical Fantasy: A setting that takes place in this world, at least 30 years before the writing of the novel, with magic.
Dark Fantasy: High Fantasy that is violent and often dystopian.
Paranormal fiction involves supernatural creatures such as witches, ghosts, vampires, psychics and werewolves.
Beyond the more prevalent themes involving shapeshifters, ghosts, or time travel, paranormal romances can also include books featuring characters with psychic abilities, like telekinesis or telepathy.
The focus is on creating a feeling of fear. Such tales are of ancient origin and form a substantial part of the body of folk literature. They can feature supernatural elements such as ghosts, witches, or vampires, or they can address more realistic psychological fears.
Mystery is a type of fiction in which a detective, or other professional, solves a crime or series of crimes.
Cozy Mystery: A low stakes mystery set in a small town. A crime fiction that gives readers a chance to delight in vicariously solving a murder—without graphic violence or sex.
Suspense is the intense feeling that an audience goes through while waiting for the outcome of certain events.
Detective/Private Investigator: Classic mystery novels where the protagonist is either asked to or volunteers to solve a crime or series of crimes.
Police Procedural: A police detective following the law to solve a high stakes crime. Typically graphic in its descriptions of violence.
Thriller: Features a high stakes plot that elicits anxiety where the goal is often to prevent a crime versus solve a crime.
Noir: A stylized mystery with a cynical protagonist.
Hard SF: Includes detailed descriptions of factually possible science in a provable scientific field
Soft SF: Characterized by its focus on social sciences, such as anthropology, sociology, and folklore.
Space Opera: Books set in a fictionalized space.
Dystopian: Set in an undesirable social and/or political environment worse than the present.
Steampunk: A historical setting where steam-powered technology plays an important part in the narrative.
Young adult fiction:
Fiction written for readers from 12 to 18 years of age. While the genre is targeted to teenagers, but approximately half of YA readers are adults. The subject matter and genres of YA correlate with the age and experience of the protagonist.
The children's book genre includes a wide range of works, including acknowledged classics of world literature, picture books and easy-to-read story books written exclusively for children, and fairy tales, lullabies, fables, folk songs defined as fiction and non-fiction
Storybooks and picture books for children 2-14
Poetry can be divided into further genres, such as epic, lyric, narrative, satirical, or prose poetry.
Poems from the heart
Literary and informative NONFICTION books
History * Memoir * Biography * Humor * Philosophy * Health and wellness
Cookbooks * Education * Reference
Aside from subject matter, literary fiction tends to be written with emphasis on prose style. While genre fiction is “transparent” (readers can see through the text to escape into the story itself), literary writers want the reader to notice how beautiful the writing is.
Captured by an author's pen
Words trapped in paper cages
Await one who'll choose to try
To sate curiosity
By peeking inside for a look
Let their mind ride inky waves
Taking the time to explore
The visions described within
Words set free to live again
~Cindy J. Smith
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