Posted by: nancyisanders | March 1, 2013

Genres: On Overview

The two main genres are fiction and nonfiction. Nonfiction is 100% true. Any manuscript that includes ingredients of make-believe is classified under fiction. Even if a lot of the facts are true, if some of it’s made up by the author, it’s classified under the main category of fiction.

Within those two genres, there are many different subcategories which can be referred to as subgenres, common genres, or other genres.

Here is an overview of many of the genres commonly found in children’s literature, from baby books to young adult novels. I’ve grouped them according to their similarities from a writer’s viewpoint rather than how a library, bookstore, or school might list them. And of course because writers are creative people who like to explore the familiar while creating innovative new types of literature, there are genres not listed here including new ones that might be hitting the market today. This list, however, will get you started with an overview.

Realistic Fiction
Historical Fiction
Literary Fiction
Christian Fiction
Novel in Verse
Teen Romance
Science Fiction
Comic and Graphic Novel
Short Story

Tall Tale
Folk Tale
Fairy Tale


Contemporary Nonfiction
Historical Nonfiction
Narrative Nonfiction

If you want to print out a list of these genres to add to your Writer’s Notebook, just visit my site, Writing According to Humphrey and Friends. Scroll down to “Genres and Subgenres” under Helpful and Essential Lists and click on it. You’ll get a free printable worksheet where you can write down more genres that you’re working on or that you learn about.

In upcoming posts here on my blog, we’ll take a look at some of these genres on this list and how they influence your plot.


  1. Hi Nancy,
    I’ve printed out the list and have added it to my new Writing Binder 🙂

    • Yay, Tracy! And I’m so excited you’ve created your own Writer’s Notebook!!!!

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