The Many Marketing Categories of Your Novel

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Imagine we are in the hallway at a writer’s conference with a group of fellow-writers. We’ve been discussing highlights of the event and throwing out snippets of knowledge. Small incomplete bits that need further information. My post today is a snippet. One I need to understand more fully but thought you might find interesting. Or better yet you might have thorough knowledge and could share in the comments.

Marketing snippet

Here is my factoid about marketing. I’ve noticed it as I complete my second author kit for my upcoming Contemporary Romance. I’ve heard it mention by many publishers. I’m still a bit confused.

Authors define the genre their book falls in before they begin writing. We use that tag to focus our words toward those readers. This is the general category our book would be marketed in. Secrets & Charades is a Romance. More specifically a Historical Romance.

For marketing purposes, it can be placed in a variety of other categories. Because of its faith theme.

  • Christian Fiction
  • Christian Historical Fiction
  • Christian Romance
  • Clean Romance
  • Christian
  • Inspirational
  • Religious

Because of the cowboys:

  • Western Romance
  • American Western Romance

Amazon allows you to list your book under three categories. My understanding (this is where I remind you this is my hearsay in the hall) if you change the listing you could increase your sales. If a historical novel were a secular romance it might be categorized under some additional categories steamy romance, erotic romance, sexy romance.

Some of the categories cross over as far as audience appeal. If a prospective reader loves Historical Romance with lots of heat my novel might not be their cup of tea. But then again, they might love it because the storyline engages them.

My upcoming contemporary romance can be listed under Romance.

And because of its faith theme:

Christian Romance

Inspirational

My hero has a prosthetic leg so we can add Wounded Warrior Romance (yes, it is a thing).

It might even be classified under categories that appeal to dog lovers. My hero has a service dog.

Don’t choose wrong categories

Although we narrow our genre focus while we write our story we want to be sure we are marketing it to as broad a market as possible without missing the mark. My novels are not children’s books or sci fi. Neither contain gratuitous sex. Listing them as erotica will irritate perspective readers. (No need for angry reviews.)

Another example

A YA Sci Fi would be classified under YA fiction

Sci Fi

Fantasy

Dystopian

Again, if it has a Christian theme it might also be listed under Christian Fantasy

Christian Dystopian

Christian Sci Fi

Inspirational and Religious.

If there is a strong romance element it might be listed under YA Romance or Sci Fi Romance.

book genre cloud

Variety of categories draws more readers

Adults could find a YA book in the Sci Fi categories. Adults read YA, by the way. Men might find Secrets & Charades in the Western and my upcoming release in Wounded Warrior.

I’m too new to this publishing biz to have any idea what is the winning category. And some of the categories I mention may not be one anymore. Even so I need to have some alternative genre categories in mind to add in future marketing. And for me I leave the final decision to my publisher and my marketing gal. If your self-pub you might want to ask your successful Indie friends what they would recommend.

Okay readers, any of you have more snippets of information to share about this topic. Curious minds are desperate to know.

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Secrets & Charades book trailer:

Interview with Missionary Author Nancy Kelley Alveraz

Nancy Kelley Alveraz has stopped by for a visit today.  I am happy to have her here. She is serving as a missionary in the Philippines, a place near to my heart. Her novel The Butterfly Impact is set in the Philippines. I love the idea of giving American readers a sense of what the world is like outside our borders while sharing your heroine’s story.  

I’ve got sweet rice and Tang to commemorate the day. Two of the often-served treats when my hubby and I ministered there. So, let’s settle in and get on with our interview.

Nancy, tell us about yourself.

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Nancy Kelley Alveraz

 

I grew up in a suburb of Detroit, Michigan but also lived in Wheaton, Illinois and Orlando, Florida. I came to know the Lord when I was a teenager crying out to God for purpose and love. He responded in a slow and steady way to bring me to the place where I could understand His love and purpose. The church I attended taught me much about mission work and my heart was drawn to helping others know Him.

After college, I was asked to go to the Philippines as a short-term missionary which stretched to 3 yrs. I fell in love with the people and my eyes were opened to how many people around the world live in poverty. I knew God was calling me to continue on this journey. After graduate school and 4 years in Japan I ended up back in the Philippines as a 39 yr old. I struggled as a single missionary but God had special plans for me. And that’s what the book is about.

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Nancy and her husband.

 

Tell us a bit about your novel.

Raina made a mess of her life. Now guilt and grief follow her everywhere. While picking up the pieces of her life God calls her to take His love and truth to others—in a distant land. Can she cope with a new culture, language, home and friends? Or will her insecurities drag her deeper into loneliness.

As a caterpillar goes through the metamorphosis from worm to delicate butterfly so is the journey from a shameful past to living in the freedom God intended. It can be a tortuous process . . . but for Raina, it’s worth it!

Laugh, cry and rejoice with Raina as God’s healing love gives her courage to do more than she ever dreamed possible.

This fictionalized story is based on real life events

 

What prompted you to write Butterfly Impact?

I wanted to give God the glory for the wonderful things He did in my life. I also want people to see how God can take a shy, ordinary girl with weaknesses and failures and use her for His purposes. This is my story, a fictionalized version.

What do you hope readers take away from your story?

When we fall we should not lose hope. Difficulties are God’s opportunity for growth and unexpected outcomes. Don’t be afraid to take risks if God is leading you.

 

Do you have other books or WIP you’d like to mention?

My husband and I are involved in an Oral Bible Story ministry with Cru International (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) called Story Runners and we bring Bible stories to people of different cultures in Southeast Asia and train nationals to reach out to unreached people groups through this oral culture method. I also have a huge passion for those oppressed through human trafficking and all its ugliness. So I’ve combined the two and compiled stories from the Bible and modern-day stories into a Bible study booklet called Life Hope.

Give my reader’s one piece of writing advice you’ve found invaluable.

Don’t lose the magic of writing by worrying about all the technical do’s and don’ts.

More about Nancy Kelley Alvarez:

Nancy Kelley Alvarez refuses to let her introverted personality keep her from sharing with others God’s stories of love and truth. Starting in college she stepped out in faith to go where God called her and she hasn’t stopped yet.

She serves with Cru International in a ministry called Story Runners, telling God’s amazing stories and training others to share them with those who would otherwise have no access to His Word. Her passion for women, especially those touched by human trafficking, drives her to find creative ways to reach out. She and her husband Al, live in Quezon City, Philippines with their sweet little dog Bingo. Look for the next book in this series, coming soon.

 

I’ve so enjoyed getting to know you. How can my readers find you?

Facebook: Nancy Kelley Alvarez

Email: pnalvarez@yahoo.com

If you’d like to order Butterfly Impact click on the link below.

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https://www.amazon.com/Butterfly-Impact-Unexpected-Courage-Transformation-ebook/

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