What’s your Genre?

I was perusing the bookstore the other day looking for a specific book.  I figured it would be in the fiction section but I was wrong – it ended up being in the mystery20140801_185815 section, I think.  The list of genres out there for books is almost staggering.  And then toss in the sub-genres and it can20140801_185907 get really confusing. Which makes the answer to “what’s your genre” not so simple.

I tend to like fiction: horror, literature, young adult, humor, and a few more.  I’ll read a wide range of topics but those are my main go-to genres (pics of my bookshelves may reflect that).  This makes me wonder how does a writer choose what genre they should fall under?  The other day I was at an author reading and she indicated there was a newish (my word, not hers) type of genre: adult vampire (or something like that), which means it has vampires, etc., in it but also has sex.  Who knew. Once a writer is done with their book, I would think the hard choice would be what genre does this fit in.  Choose the wrong one and it may get marketed ineffectively.  Choose the right one and it could be a massive hit.  Then again, sometimes genre doesn’t matter.  If it’s a good book, people will buy it, regardless of the genre.

When did the massive amount of types of books come about, or has it always been that way and it’s just much more in the forefront due to marketing tactics?  I guess the point of this post is try not to limit yourself to reading a specific genre.  If you like YA you may like some horror; if you like fantasy, you may like some historical fiction.  There certainly isn’t any problem with sticking with what you like, but don’t be afraid to branch out once in a while.  Even if you only find one book outside of your norm, that’s one more book/genre you’ve exposed yourself to. The more variety you read, the better for yourself.

What’s your genre?  If you’ve read something outside your norm, did it cause you to read a wider variety of books?