I think I am having an identity crisis, or a genre crisis, to be more specific.
When I first began writing my book, a story about a young Acadian woman working the midnight shift at a convenience store while trying to make a better life for herself, I assumed I was simply writing fiction. While this was true, I soon learned that I needed to adopt a category of fiction if I was ever going to get my book into the hands of the right readers (and let's not even discuss metadata requirements).
After many conversations that started with, 'So tell me, what is your book about...", I decided to adopt the genre Literary fiction. However, this term never really sat well with me since I kept having flashbacks of Canadian Literary class in high school when we read and debated some seriously deep literary novels by great authors such as Margaret Laurence. While my book promised to be both light and dark, funny and sad, I wouldn't claim it to be the perfect example of a complex and multi-layered work of Literary fiction.
And so, I continue to work on the final edits of my book while continuing to search for my one true genre. Recently, I learned of a new category, one that holds promise of my genre--New Adult. It represents post-adolescence and coming-of-age that happens to a young person in his/her twenties. Perfect! But...after spending time in New Adult groups in Goodreads and surfing through the suggested readings, I remain confused. Many of these books, perhaps erroneously categorized or suffering from their own identity crisis, feature young protagonists worrying about going to prom and friends that steal boyfriends. No disrespect, but sounds more like Young Adult fiction to me.
As New Adult fiction continues to mature into a bona fide genre, I eagerly await to see the breadth of the books it will encompass.
Onward and upward.