Mslexia, the magazine for women who write | www.mslexia.co.uk
Interviews with bestselling authors
"How I did it"
The Mslexia Roadshow (supported by Arts Council England) has been touring the country since 2001, running writing WORKSHOPS and interviewing top women authors about their creativity and how they first got published. Here we have gathered together highlights from six of those interviews, each representing one of six best-selling genres.
To put the interviews in context - and to find out what’s hot and what’s not in each different genre - we also spoke to their LITERARY AGENTS.
What is a genre?
A literary genre is a word used to classify the subject matter and style of a book.
A literary genre is a word used to classify the subject matter and style of a book. A book’s genre determines how it will be marketed by the publisher and bookseller. It influences everything from the cover design and blurb to where it’s shelved and whether it will be considered worth reviewing.
Publishers’ different imprints often focus on one or two similar genres (e.g. police procedural and psychological thriller), as this enables editors and marketing people to build up an expertise in that field. Agents, too, tend to specialise in one or two genres, and to cultivate contacts with a key group of editors This is why it makes sense to try and classify your novel before submitting it. That way you can describe it accurately in your PITCH LETTER and send it to the appropriate literary agents.
The genres we are covering here are historical, women’s general, children’s contemporary, psychological thriller, literary and police procedural. But there are many (many) more, including: political thriller, historical romance, chick lit, science fiction, fantasy, horror, erotic…
Murder, mystery and history
Six of the best
HOW TO GET PUBLISHED
The interviews in this section were conducted by Mslexia Founder Debbie Taylor for the Roadshow.
Go to AGENTS for cutting-edge advice from the frontline.
Get published workshops
Go to WORKSHOPS for constructive advice on how to get published.