It is always difficult for writers to straddle the line of genre and literary. Some may take a dip into the other pool on occasion, but almost always come back. I understand reader expectations being severely altered (and maybe some lost with switching over) but it still severely limits a writer.
It is possible to go through writing both using a pen name for one type and your real name for the other. It would mean starting your audience all over again but the benefits would be numerous if you don’t wish to be defined.
Perhaps this is where poets have the advantage. Maybe, unless you are one of the top poets in the country, people don’t really care WHAT kind of poems you write. Poets’ readerships tend to be somewhat different beasts than those of novel writers. Then again, editors are another matter.
If you are well-known for writing genre poetry, will it alter a literary editor’s perception of you and your work (or vice versa)? I would love to believe that no one is judged on anything but the quality of the submission in front of the editor but we all know it isn’t always the case. So, crud.
My best friend and I discussed this recently. She has advised me to pick which one I love the best but, while that is good advice for something you can’t necessarily fight against, I want to write both. Worse, I want to have an audience for both which is not going to happen if I have to choose.
I know, it sounds whiny. Most writers are extremely happy with just one. I should pick. But I hesitate. I hesitate because there is more than one part of me telling me more than one thing. I pause because I’m dealing with being a complex person who enjoys many things. Why can’t everyone just enjoy a bit of everything? I would choose somewhere in that middle world, where I currently reside. Gelitere!