Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been thinking about branching out more in my writing, trying new genres and forms . . . especially new genres. Fantasy has become my comfort zone, so much so that when I think about trying new genres, I get a bit squeamish. Similarly, novels, short stories, and free verse poetry have become my go-to. I added these blog posts to that list only last year. Not trying new genres or forms of literature has made my writing feel stagnant and has made me a less versatile writer. It’s good to stick to what we know, but we should also learn new things.

Last year, I half-heartedly tried out my hand in writing sci-fi, but I never finished the two sci-fi shorts I started. I also gave horror a shot, with much better results. It turned out to be a stimulating genre. I think I took to it more because I was already used to including horror elements in my fantasy, so I didn’t feel so out of place. Still, I havent explored it enough. Last week, I tried writing a double haiku for the first time ("Dusk"). I loved the experience. It was challenging, and though I’m sure I’ll get better with more practice, I found the result encouraging—empowering, even.

In conclusion, we shouldn’t be afraid to try our hand at new genres or new forms of literature. Don’t be discouraged if your first few attempts don’t yield the best results (like I was when it came to sci-fi). Just keep practicing. It usually helps to read more of whatever genres and forms we set our sights on, and it also helps to connect with other writers who can provide sound advice. I’ve read quite a few more sci-fi stories since my last attempt at writing it, so I feel like I have more of a grip on the genre. I plan to return to my abandoned sci-fi pieces, and I’d love to try out steampunk and cyberpunk.

What genre of literature will you try next?