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Question
That's another ambiguous term. One agency said they handle "commercial fiction." I am assuming that covers mysteries or the Chinese private eye I gave as an example earlier? Is this correct? Is "commercial" genre fiction?
No, I belive you are correct in saying the market would be broader if listed as "mystery" rather than "ethnic." I mean, Walter Mosley's black detective story has the word  "mystery" on the book. That is only one example.

Answer
All genre fiction is commercial by its nature. But "commercial" is not a genre in its own right. The only fiction that ISN'T deemed "commercial" or "mainstream" fiction by publishers/agents is literary fiction and historical fiction. Different readers buy those, and the requirements of the writing style don't depend on the typical tropes of fiction, such as a plot and characterization.

Cathy

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Cathy Clamp

Expertise

I'm happy to answer questions about any aspect of writing novels, from the beginning kernel of an idea through completion. I can help with writing a query letter and synopsis to an agent or editor. I can explain publishing terminology and acronyms. I can also assist with questions about verifying the credentials of agents/publishers and how to proceed once you've been accepted for publication. I can teach the rules of formatting a manuscript, creating viable plots, characterization and flow in the following genres: romance, science fiction, fantasy, thrillers, suspense, horror, women's fiction, mainstream and mystery.

Experience

I'm a USA Today bestselling author of urban fantasy and paranormal romance for Tor/Forge Books. Along with a co-author, I've published fifteen novels (combination of mass market and trade softcover) since 2003, and have contracts for four more books through 2011.

Organizations
Romance Writers of America, Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Western Outdoor Writers, Horror Writers of America.

Publications
Tor/Forge Books, Western Reflections Publishing, BenBella Books, Running Press, Wild Child Publishing. Many others.

Education/Credentials
My educational background is limited to real life experience of publishing novels commercially for the past five years.

Awards and Honors
USA Today bestseller, Waldenbooks Mass Market Paperback Top 20 bestseller, Nielsen BookScan Top 20 bestseller, RT BOOKreviews Career Achievement Award winner, 2009, Book Buyers Best Award for Paranormal, Romantic Times Best Werewolf Novel, Write Touch Readers Award, EVVY Best Historical Chronicle Award, The Lories Best Paranormal. Many others.

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