Welcome to the Saturday Spotlight, a weekly feature that shines the light on Indie and Debut authors. This week Im thrilled to introduce readers to:
~Author of Elixir~
I Don’t Know What It Is, but I Like It: The Art of Genre Blending
by Ted Galdi- 2014
Have you ever been inside a cool restaurant or hotel and were immediately grabbed by the scenery? Likely, you were somewhere that blended different design styles; this sort of “wow” reaction typically only comes from scenery that is (1) different and (2) beautiful. That’s not to say traditional design can’t be great – for instance, a beach hotel in the Caribbean with top-notch tropical furniture, bars, art, etc may be awesome, but it’s not likely to produce the “wow” reaction that a place like The Wynn/Encore Resort in Las Vegas does, which combines multiple design techniques in a totally original way.
|Movie Poster (CC) Miramax|
Books with effective radical messages are few and far between, and often have just as much to do with the political/social climate of the time they were published as the writing itself. Genre blending on the other hand is much more accessible, as it relies strictly on what exists on the page, and not the events in the world. If done naturally without drawing attention to itself, it has the ability to create a whole new category, which by effect only has one book in it; now that’s unique.
There are of course other ways for single-genre books to stand out, for instance, an author telling a story from a very interesting perspective, switching from first person to third person and jumping through time. However, things like format and perspective, though powerful tools, are lenses that stories are told through, while genre sits at the heart of the story itself.
So, how does genre blending work? Usually a story holds true to a main genre while weaving in elements from one to many others. For illustrative purposes I’m going to use an example that’s not a book, but rather, a movie – Pulp Fiction, written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. Principally it’s a crime film, however, it successfully incorporates pieces from all of these genres and potentially even more (depending on definitions): Western, romantic suspense, buddy, religious, and slapstick comedy.
Pulp Fiction meshes these components in an apparently effortless way, without drawing any attention to the “seams.” The result is something that is not only different, but works fluidly as a whole. This brings me to my final point: different for the sake of being different is typically a terrible strategy, whether in hotel design, books, or movies. A cell phone that weighs 100 lbs may be different, but I guarantee nobody will trade in their iPhone for it. “Different” only works if it’s part of a bigger vision. As mentioned earlier, uniqueness and greatness are separate things; for them to overlap, genres should be blended in a way that works underneath the story, silently making it better without creating any distractions. That’s where the “wow” comes from.
Ted Galdi is a twenty-nine-year-old author living in Los Angeles. Elixir is his first book. Prior to writing it, he co-founded the software company StadiumRoar.com.
Ted is a graduate of Duke University. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Today I have one Paperback copy of Elixir to giveaway. US residents only. Please fill in the form for your chance to win.
Meet 14-year-old Sean Malone. He has an IQ above 200, a full-ride scholarship to one of the country’s top universities, and more than one million dollars from his winning streak on Jeopardy. However, Sean wishes he could just be normal.
But his life is anything but normal. The US government manipulates him, using him as a codebreaker in pursuit of a drug lord and killing innocent people along the way.
For reasons related to his personal security, Sean finds himself in Rome, building a new life under a new name, abandoning academics, and hiding his genius from everyone. When he’s 18 he falls in love. The thrills begin again when he learns that his girlfriend is critically ill and it’s up to him to use his intellect to find a cure, a battle pitting him against a multi-billion-dollar pharmaceutical company and the demons of his past.
Thanks for being on the spotlight Ted! To learn more about this author check out: