Discussing genre is always fun, right? Or is does it just make us crazy? Trying to pin down a story into a certain category?
As you may or may not know, I've been pondering the differences and the sameness-es of the horror and paranormal genre categories these past couple of weeks. After some other random discussions and looking it up here's what I'm understanding:
Paranormal is a story that includes something that can't be explained in our real life world. Something, you know. . .not normal. This could also be described as supernatural actually. I'm not sure there's a true difference between these two words either.
I was just reading something where people think that if you say paranormal that automatically makes people think romance. Really? Okay. If you say supernatural, you take the romance connotation out of it. Hmm. Something to think about there I guess.
Horror basically means a book that is trying to scare the readers, whether that's through intense suspense (oh, I like those two words together!) or the creep factor, or blood and guts and gore. But bottom line, it HAS to be scary.
So that being said, a paranormal book could be horror and a horror book could be paranormal, right? But you could have horror with normal everyday events, and paranormal without being scary.
But like the word paranormal, I think most people assume that something considered horror will have certain elements. Blood and guts and gore perhaps. Really creepy monsters maybe. Crazy insane people. Clowns. Doll faces.
Do you think that paranormal is a subset of horror? Or that horror is a subset of paranormal? Do you think paranormal ALWAYS has romance? What about supernatural? So would saying a book is a paranormal romance be redundant? And would saying a book is paranormal horror be a thing? Or is that redundant too?
And speaking of paranormal, are you all so turned off by that genre lately that you turn your nose up if something is described as such? And the big question of the day: Is horror "more cool?" Seriously. Genres have a reputation and if one's story gets labeled a certain way, it's a big deal!
I want to know what you think!
(Stay tuned for another genre discussion next week: historical vs. contemporary and at what time period does one become the other?)