Guest Post – Pauline Holyoak

Pauline1I grew in Southeast England, in a coal mining village lovingly nicknamed, “The place that time forgot.” Go to my website, click on ‘Articles’ and find out why.  I immigrated to Canada when I was 21 in search of adventure and a new life.  I currently live in Alberta with my sports crazy husband, adorable sheltie dog and cantankerous ginger cat. I am the proud mother of two grown children and one adorable grandchild.

Natasha has asked me to write a post on what defines my genre. I remember struggling with this before I started to look for a publisher for my first book. My story contained elements of romance, lust, fantasy, horror, suspense and humor. How was I going to choose a genre for a story that fit into so many categories? Since the publishing industry is segmented by genre, I knew it was essential for me to find my niche before I offered my manuscript to a publisher.

After much research, I decided that my trilogy fit the thriller/suspense genre, with a paranormal subgenre.

This is what defines my genre.

Pauline2The dramatic conflicts of thrillers/suspense are fraught with peril; a life-threatening danger that jeopardizes the protagonist, his or her loved ones, or even the whole world. The stakes are often large—death and destruction to lives, the downfall of an entire nation, an ecological disaster. However, thrillers can also simply portray riveting psychological tension between two opposing characters. Thrillers and suspense fiction are paired together because thrillers often utilize suspense elements in the development of the story—evil lurking just around the corner that motivates the protagonist to hunt down and capture the villain-at-large.

Although both thrillers and mysteries often involve the protagonist solving a crime and bringing bad guys to justice, the central conflict of thrillers/suspense focuses on developing an urgent sense of imminent jeopardy rather than solving a mystery or the detection of a crime. Thriller/suspense protagonists must win at all costs against a menacing, pernicious threat—or else things are going from bad to worse, and fast. Thriller/suspense is also included in the general grouping of “genre fiction,” “category fiction,” “mainstream” fiction,” or “mass market fiction.”

Paranormal stories are set in the real world, the world as we know it…with a little extra thrown in. Vampires, shape-shifters, fairies, elves, witches, demons, gargoyles, ghosts, psychics, mediums, telepaths, time travelers…these all belong in the paranormal world.

The pros and cons of writing a trilogy.

Pauline4Writing a trilogy or series is not an easy task. You have to keep your story line alive, long enough, to warrant three or more full length novels, and make sure that your characters do not perish from exhaustion, before they arrive at their destination. Each book must stand alone for readers who haven’t followed the previous books yet and you can’t bore those who have, with repetitive details of earlier events. You have to make your first book so compelling, that your readers will be anxious for the next one, and get the second one finished, published and out there, while the first one is still fresh in their minds….Writing a trilogy or series does have it’s advantages though. One already knows the characters, has done the research, established tone, point of view and motivation. ‘And’ if your first book is successful it’s almost a guarantee that your publisher will accept the next one.

Merryweather Lodge – A quaint little cottage, steeped in history, shrouded in secrets, its aura a paradoxical essence of heaven and hell. Come with me to the West Country in England and experience my protagonist’s strange and eerie journey there.

PaulineMy books are available in print or eBook format at http://www.whiskeycreekpress.com  or  www.amazon.com Book three of my trilogy will be released on July 1st.

Please come visit me at http://www.paulineholoak.com  read about my fascinating life and view my videos.

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