I've been stressing a lot about my genre. Not about which genre my novel fits - it's romantic suspense. Has to be. The romance is high, and sweet, and strong, but there are some pretty harsh elements that are not so romantic.What I mean is: I don't follow the formula for either category (romance/romantic suspense).
I'm not writing a story about two "wrong for each other" people who lust/hate/misunderstand/love&all is perfect.
I'm writing Kasia & Jake's love story. Sure, Kasia is overly reluctant to get into the relationship, but she's not an idiot. She and Jake are meant for each other and they both know it early on. That doesn't mean there's not tension between them, sexual and otherwise. It just means they don't assume things, not ask, and go off in a huff before falling into bed, then fighting about a silly misunderstanding, then...love. In fact, they don't fall into bed for quite a while, and not until the relationship is solid and sure, and there's love. It works, simply because that's who they are.
And I'm writing Kasia's story. She's emotionally/socially immature maybe, but that's all. She's been taking care of herself for a long while, and she has the brains and bravado to back it up. When things go awry, she doesn't wait for a knight in shining armor. Instead, she takes a deep breath, gains strength from her love for that knight and figures her own way out a terrifying situation.
Not the formula. At. all. Publishers claim to want fresh and new, but that's not what I'm seeing so much - especially in my genre. I'm happy with the story I wrote. Otherwise I wouldn't have taken 2 years perfecting this one before sending it out into the scary world.
My story is true to my characters, not my genre.
I prefer to read outside the box. How 'bout you?
Does anybody else out there stray from the formula of their genre/s?