have I invented a new genre?

February 19, 2009

So there I am, writing some notes down, I can’t even remember what now, and I misspelled a word.  Happens all the time.  But this was one of those misspellings that opened whole new worlds of possibilities:  urbane fantasy.

What would that even look like?

I cautiously entered the drawing room, searching about me for my adversary.  There he stood, gazing out the window upon the moonlit lawn.  His coat and cravat were impeccably arranged; he struck a handsome figure.  But when he turned to me, I could see the unholy glint in his eyes, marking his true nature.

“Ah, you’ve found me at last,” he said in a cool, refined voice.

“Quite,” I said, adjusting my gloves, then removing the stake I’d hidden beneath my corset.

“Might I interest you in a drink first?” the vampire said, gesturing to a sideboard holding a splendid cut crystal decanter of what looked to be brandy.

“Thank you, but no.”

“It’s perfectly safe.  I’m not so uncouth as to resort to poison.”

“So I trust, but we’re not here to exchange pleasantries, are we?”

“On the contrary.  You look quite ravishing this evening, my dear.”

“Again, I thank you, but I would rather dispense with such.”  I smoothed my skirts one last time and prepared myself…

Hrm.  I think this has potential.

Oh, and there’s a new interview with me up at Fangoria.


16 Responses to “have I invented a new genre?”

  1. musicalmom Says:

    Oh how clever – Noel Coward eat your heart out!

  2. Brandon Says:

    I dunno… one step more in this direction and she’s apologizing for being so terribly rude as to stake him while he’s napping.

  3. Johnnie Says:

    How very Brittish of you. All you need now are the Dickens style street urchins.

  4. Johnnie Says:

    I just thought of something…you forgot her gentleman escort as it would not be proper for a woman to be alone in another man’s home without one…

    Damn, now I can’t get this out of my mind.

  5. Hay, that’s so precisely what I write! How deliciously droll.

  6. Jessica Says:


  7. Nona Says:

    (I don’t have an email right now, but had to comment.)
    I’d totally read this. It’s John Steed and Mrs Peel with fangs!

  8. Markysan Says:

    It reminds me of the Bruce Campbell sendup of ‘The Haunting’ in the movie ‘Waxwork 2’.

    Worth seeing for that segment alone.

  9. Yann Says:

    Damned dyslexia! I read this as ubrane fantasy. Branes are part of mathematical physics arising from string theory. They play a role in answering some of the fundamental problems of cosmology.

    Now, am I the only one thinking that the concept of U-brane fantasy could be something awesome to behold.

    Anyhoo…. Damned dyslexia!

  10. Knighton Says:

    Colleen Gleason comes close with her Gardella Vampire Chronicles. 😉

  11. Like putting in were-pomeranian instead of werewolf. 🙂

  12. Jenn Says:


    As a fan of old movies, I’d be looking forward to it.

    I know I saw one writer who was doing some kind of kickass female Victoriana stuff, but I never got a close enough look to determine if it was Paranormal Romance or a variation of Urban Fantasy.

  13. Sam Says:

    I don’t know if you read comments on such ancient posts, but…

    This edges into the micro-sub-genre once referred to as Mannerpunk on rec.arts.sf.written.

    Some examplars: Steven Brust (particularly the Dumas pastiches), Ellen Kushner, and Elizabeth Willey.

    I thought I had used that exact phrase, “urbane fantasy” in a reaction/mini-review to Willey’s “The Well-Favored Man” in a post more than a decade ago (looking at the publication date, it must have been almost 15 years ago, ack phft!) on that newsgroup but the Google Groups archive isn’t finding it.

    Hmm… found my mini-review and it’s almost 16 years ago, and I did not use that phrase, oh well. But a quote from that thread:

    Yes, the setting definitely has an Amber flavor. but I think the witty dialogue by the intelligent characters is the best part of the story.

  14. […] factor of Soulless? “I like to think of my book as urbane fantasy (Carrie Vaughn coined the term https://carriev.wordpress.com/2009/02/19/have-i-invented-a-new-genre). I’m honestly happy to see it fall where it may, but I find in most bookstores they are […]

  15. […] with other Young Adult books. I consider my books a mix of steampunk and urban fantasy. I like Carrie Vaughn’s term “urbane fantasy” which nicely incorporates both sub-genres. There’s also the delightful term […]

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