Friday, January 28, 2011

We need a new name...

Actual conversation I had with a lady this morning...

Lady, "So, what do you do for a living?"
Me, "I'm a fantasy author!" (always so cool to say)
Lady, "Oh wow! So like Harry Potter?!"
Me, "No, Harry Potter's YA, I write adult fantasy."
Lady, "............." 
Me, "NO! Not THAT kind of adult fantasy!"

I still don't think she believes I don't write porn. Would you believe this has happened to me more than once? I need something new to call my books. I usually go with adventure fantasy, since there's lots of fighting and action-y type mayhem, but they're also funny. Yet with YA becoming the prevalent fantasy mainstay in mainstream culture thanks to HP and the other usual suspects, I find myself having to clarify all the time that my books are for adults, or at least they don't feature kids as protagonists. (Actually, teens and kids seem to really like my books).

So, how to specify that this is a novel written for grown ups without veering into all the nuances of "Adult"? The most obvious choice would be a pairing for Young Adult, but somehow I don't think Old Adult Fantasy would be very marketable. 

Maybe I'll just stick with "I wrote a book. There's a wizard in it!" And let the intrigued figure it out from there.


Lindsay Ribar said...

Well, there's always:

"Fantasy! Like Harry Potter?"
"Yup, except the characters are grown-ups!"

Nice and basic, and their minds don't go straight to porn! I mean, hopefully.

Kalayna Price said...

I have totally had this exact same conversation, though add in that mine is "dark fantasy" which means I write the really sadistic porn. **headdesk**

Rachel Aaron said...

@Lindsay, see but that's such a nice, sensible thing to say! :D

@Kalayna, and here I was reading your books wondering when the S&M was going to come in!

Elfy said...

I get the same thing when I tell people I read fantasy, for years it was: 'Oh, like Lord of the Rings?', now it's 'Oh, like Harry Potter?'
Sigh, one day they'll realise we're all grown ups.

Anonymous said...

You can always simply state that you write fantasy for all ages featuring an adult protagonist (which it is). But then you probably wont get any fun reactions.

Love the books btw. The spirit eater is the first (and still the only) title I bought as an e-book. I just couldn't wait!

Lee Mason/GWT@Firstgroup said...

Rachel, I'd go with "mature fantasy" - hard to infer anything from that!

(ps: Your work is great, keep it coming!)