After a long, cold winter we're having a mild Spring in Sydney, as good a weather as any to have, I expect, whilst I'm putting the finishing touches to publishing my novel (plus a whole lot of research on format, promotion, all those nasty bits.) In fact I came across an article recently that speculated on what kind of reading is preferred by the different generations.
My novel is mystery/suspense, aimed at fans of the genre rather than any particular age group, which is the case, I would think, for most novels. There's exceptions, of course - YA novels, obviously aimed at teens, and certainly some chick-lit that's primarily marketed to a young, sassy, urbane female readership.
This got me to thinking about the various generations and our desire for placing labels on them.
Since the 1960's the world has, for some unknown reason, been doing just that.
So after the post-Second World War Baby Boomers, we've had Generation X, then Generation Y, and then...I'm not sure if we're up to Gen Y-Not, or Z, but I do know we're about to run out of the alphabet. No-one though that one through.
So does everything deserve to have its own generation recognized and labeled?
Book fans, for example? If you're a reader who only likes to read a specific genre, be it thriller or s/f or romance, should we identify you as one of the Genre-ation?
Have you ever encountered one of those older gentlemen, perhaps himself once in the Armed Forces, or just a guy with an interest in all things military, who mainly reads wartime fiction and non-fiction? Generation W, I'd say.
And then there's Generation SAS (Short Attention Span) who love their flash fiction, their blogs, the newly emerging phone text fiction, but whose cut-off point is around 100 words or less. They've already stopped reading this and moved on.
Generation E for those who exclusively download their books for their Kindle or their Kobo or their Nook or their Ipad, Iphone or IRiver, or any of those devices that start with a K or an I or an N...
How about Generation A for those alpha males and females, always scanning for the latest tome on how to become a super-successful so-and-so in the mad-dog, cut-throat, greed-is-good corporate world, or Gen N for those nerdy, nervy, nocturnal fans of fantasy realms - those epic tales set on mystical, faraway worlds that look suspiciously like parts of Europe in the Middle Ages?
Perhaps this is a doomed cause. With so many books, so many genres and sub-genres, so many reader interests and reading devices, we'd soon run right through the alphabet even if we started with A.
In hindsight, that can only be a good thing. The alphabet, after all, has much better things to do with its letters.