Advertisements

Is A Writing Niche Necessary?

3429328020_9c857ebb34_o

A writing niche is an area of writing that any given author specializes in. Typically, it’s what their best at – and what they enjoy writing the most. Many people may ask you what your writing niche is, and they’d be looking for the specific genre – coming of age fiction, young adult romance, epic fantasy, historical romance, psychological thrillers, etc. Sometimes a niche encompasses a specific idea, place, or person, as well. No matter what you believe your personal niche is, or what others is, the question remains the same: is a writing niche necessary?

There are two sides to this argument, and it all really depends on how you use your writing niche. Some people restrict themselves to writing only things pertaining to their niche – I mean, this is what they’re known for, so why change, right? Others simply stick primarily to their niche in order to define themselves to their target audience, while branching off to write in other niches or genres along their journey. Let’s take a look at each of these, as well as how they can hurt and/or help you in your writing.

Situation #1:
Restricting yourself to writing only things which pertain to your specific niche, simply because that is what you are known for.

 

This situation is bad, because it really stifles your creativity and train of thought. I mean, what if you come up with an amazing idea for a story you know you could absolutely rock, but push it to the side simply because its outside of your normal writing niche? That one story you pushed to the side for no reason besides it didn’t fit what you normally write could have been your “one.” You know, the one story that pushes you into the big times? Places you as a household name? Yeah, it could have been that one.

As an author, you should never stifle your creativity. It’s what makes you an author. So what if a few of your titles are written in a genre that doesn’t exactly fall under your niche? Here are two good examples. The first is a good friend of mine, who is the most amazing fantasy writer I know. She has also written one children’s book, and one paranormal romance. Then there’s me. Although young adult/coming of age books are really my ‘niche,’ I’ve also written two dramatic fiction, one romance, two poetry, and six non-fiction titles.

Situation #2:
Sticking primarily to your niche in order to define yourself to your target audience, while branching off to write in other genres as you feel inspired.

 

If you want to develop and use your ‘niche,’ this is a good way to do it. Really, a niche should only be a most basic guideline in defining yourself to your target audience. This means you will have a good idea of how to market yourself (because you’ll know who you’re marketing to), but that you won’t have to stifle your creativity or restrict your train of thought if it wanders off course. I’ll be perfectly honest with you, dear readers, my best stories have come when I allowed my train of thought to wander far off the beaten course. It’s a bit shocking when it happens for the first time, but you’ll soon grow so used to it you won’t even have to think about allowing your mind to wander that far.

So, what do you think? Do you think that finding your own writing niche is entirely vital to your career, or do you think it’s something that can be done without? Why or why not? Tell us all about it in the comments below!

If you’d like to read more on a similar topic, be sure to check out our blog post, 20 Ordinary Ways & Places To Find Inspiration.

Advertisements

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. P. C. Zick
    Sep 16, 2014 @ 08:00:02

    I’ve tried to develop a niche rather unsuccessfully thus far. Perhaps it’s because I continue to stretch and experiment with my craft. I don’t want to be defined by one thing only.

    Reply

    • Dixie's Ranter
      Sep 16, 2014 @ 09:23:01

      I entirely understand what you mean. Originally, I intended to write only young adult fiction – as that is what I usually seem to relate too. But if I hadn’t experimented and expanded my writing outside of this niche, I wouldn’t have any of my non-fiction titles, or my romance novel. Being define by one thing only is much too restrictive, and authors tend to dislike restrictions. Our job is literally to break the mold.

      Reply

      • P. C. Zick
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 09:32:27

        I so agree. I’m finally writing a series of romance novels but I fought that for a long time because I never wanted to be in a formula. I’m doing it now for commercial reasons, but I’m still keeping myself open to other genres.

        Reply

        • Dixie's Ranter
          Sep 16, 2014 @ 09:35:42

          Ah, that’s what many people don’t understand. Often, we must balance what we want to do and what will sell. That’s originally why I began writing my romance novel, and one of my comedic titles. They’ve both sold fairly well, and have brought in numerous new readers for me. I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors!

          Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: