The question is: Why do I want to write in this genre? Particularly when it seems to be oversaturated with authors and stories.
The simple answer is: It makes me happy. It's what I want to read. It's what turns me on. It's what I want to think about. It's what I want to spend my time on when I have the time to spend on it. And if someone else happens to like it, that's great. That's fabulous. I might even make a couple of bucks on it someday.
Or I might not. But that's not why I'm interested in writing M/M Romance at this point. I'm writing for me, not for an audience. I write because I enjoy writing when I'm inspired, and M/M Romance is what inspires me currently. Okay, sometimes M/M/F ménage inspires me too, but I haven't written any of that. (Yet.)
I've written a couple of freebie stories to date for the GoodReads M/M Romance group's anthologies the past couple of years. That's the sum of my writing which anyone has read. I have also written a couple of fan-fictions which no one has ever read. (I wrote them in anticipation of a contest by the author who created the universe, and the contest hasn't happened yet because the book the contest might precede isn't ready for release yet. But hey, I wrote something.)
And it's okay that I haven't done any more yet. There are reasons for that, and there are excuses, too. I may not ever get around to writing at a professional level. There are a lot of personal circumstances which need to change, only some over which I have any control. And there are other things which I want to spend my limited time on right now. I have a lot of interests, and my attention is divided. My writing has not yet become the focus of all my spare time. It will at some point in the future. And that's okay too.
I have ideas, one in particular which has been gnawing on my brain for over a year and will require a lot more research before I can flesh out the universe. Thinking about what to do with those characters often keeps me mentally occupied on the way to work. (I bought myself a voice recorder so I could make sure to keep all those random thoughts documented and not lose them. It's been heavenly, though the transcription when I get home from work is time-consuming sometimes.) And I will get it written down at some point. Unless I die young, and there's jack-all I can do about that. If it happens, it happens, and I will not regret that I didn't get it written down, because I did things that made me happy when I wasn't writing.
Do I worry about oversaturation in the market? Nope, not really, and here's why: Cream rises to the top. If you are cream, you will separate from the rest, and it doesn't matter how many books you release, or how often, or whether it is your first or your fiftieth. There are readers who will follow your writing because they enjoy it and the stories you tell and how you tell them. Word of mouth sells you better than any other marketing. Those who are cream don't sweat the small stuff because they have no reason to. (Fabulous editors and publishers really help this, too.)
Am I cream? Heh. That's not for me to answer, is it? That's up to the readers of my stories. Do I think I am? Hell no. I know I have quite a few shortcomings in my writing at this point. I know what I need to work on, and that's why I write the free stories I do. That's me ironing out the chinks in my writing. I wouldn't expect someone else to pay for work that isn't up to par. (No one else should expect me to pay for that either.)
I have also heard some "full-time" authors rant that those of us who aren't dedicated to being an author full-time, not spending all of our time writing, are a detriment to the genre. Apparently we don't work on our craft enough, and that's why the genre is oversaturated with poor stories. There may even be a kernel of truth to that, but it's a sweeping generalization, and like all of them, it's flawed.
There are multiple factors which will lead to oversaturation within a genre, and it's not all in the authors' hands. There are some fabulous new authors who don't write full-time who already have decent-sized followings. And, there are some niche independent publishers cranking out some pretty lousy, poorly edited stories as well. (There's a reason that many readers have a list of publishers from whom they will no longer purchase books. I have my own. Publishers have their own cream separation.)
Whether those who are jawing about the issues of oversaturation are "full-time" authors or not, my theory is they are worried they're not part of the cream. Perhaps they're right to worry. (Or perhaps they didn't even have the words to express the thought as to why oversaturation even concerns them.) Work on your own craft and worry about yourself rather than anyone else. That's the only way to become part of the cream.
So, why do I want to write in this (oversaturated?) genre?
Because I do. And that’s reason enough.
Adara O’Hare is a geek in writer’s clothing—a mild-mannered website designer by day and a wife, mother, reader, and sometimes writer by night. Adara is an avid reader who writes on occasion, mostly for her own enjoyment. You can find her online here: