East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

What’s my niche?

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So an idea came up, a sort of half-proposal about doing something new and different for 2020. And I’m always happy to do something new and different, exploring different ideas, different media, different platforms etc.
And honestly, it would be a fun project. It would take about one day per week, and it’s something nobody’s done yet in my country.

The problem is, it runs the risk of branding me, of fitting me into a very tight and specific niche.
Which every marketing guru says it’s a great thing, but I’m afraid it’s just not me. As I said above, I like exploring and trying new ideas, new paths.
becoming a specialist was never my target – not even in academia.
I always looked for interdisciplinary projects. That’s why I never got funding.
And as a writer, I do all sorts of different stuff, fiction and non-fiction, in Italian and English, fantasy, science fiction, horror, straight adventure, historical, thrillers…
I have been told repeatedly this variety is damaging me.
“You should be the SF guy! Or the fantasy guy! Find your niche and milk it for all it’s worth.”
But I am all over the place. So sue me.

So the question is – should I invest my time and very very limited resources to try and jump-start a new project that could type-cast me?

Well, the type-casting/tight branding thing is certainly a big con.
But what about the pros?

  • I’d get to experiment with a new medium.
  • I’d get to work on new themes and ideas I always liked.
  • I might reach a sector of the public that so far I have missed.
  • I would have the opportunity to use a set of skills I have and have never used fully so far.
  • I would have fun.
  • I could make a buck.

So, in the end, my answer is – why not?

Ah, the Christmas week is going to be BUSY!

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

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