Many literary writers today are embracing genre - it's a form of competition that's inevitable for writers. Just as creative writing has become more cinematic in style in order to compete with movies, many literary writers, most of which are consideredstruggling "mid-list" writers, are finding it necessary to encroach on the most popular of genres.
If you're writing a mystery, for instance, or a romance, a young adult novel, or a suspense piece, agents, editors and publishers will at the very least pause longer over your query letter. But I have to wonder at the effect literary writers or writers of general fiction will have on the structure of genre works.
These days, if you approach an agent with a query, and the agent asks for a pertial manuscript, he or she will evaluate what you've done with respect to the generally accepted structure of such genre pieces. If you decide to tinker with the structure? Said agents will either urge you to modify the piece you've labored over - or they'll reject it out of hand.
What's your alternative? Digital self-publishing, then, seems the only viable alternative. But you still have to jump through all the hoops on conventional publishing: submit your work to a reputable freelance editor and proofreader. You can digitally publish for almost nothing, but you still have to devise cover art. You have to promote, you have to sell youself and your work.
This, then may be where the next step forward in creative writing will come from. MFA programs will teach you technique, and to a limited extent they'll suggest how to tinker with form. But beyond that, you're on your own. Still, that's not a bad thing - innovation is based both on knowing the existing state of things and knowing how to separate from that pack - and that's going to always come from the individual, not from the industry.
Causes Bob Mustin Supports
Native American culture. Education. Creative writing.