The Time Machine, War of the Worlds. If you’re a fan of classic literature, you’ll recognize the title of two of H. G. Wells’ most cherished novels. But while many describe Wells as a science fiction writer, our human obsession with putting people into neat boxes ignores a robust body of work in various genres.
Wells didn’t just write science fiction, though this is what he’s best known for. He also wrote short stories, social criticism essays, nonfiction books, comedy, and satire. And he did more than write. He also served as a book reviewer and promoted authors such as James Joyce and Joseph Conrad. Wells also had a keen interest in politics and social reform, and even ran for parliament at one point.
Some people might be quick to point out that Wells lived in a different time, when renaissance people had a better chance of getting noticed. But there are plenty of successful multi-genre authors living today. Neil Gaiman, Stephen King, and Nora Roberts, among others, are just a few examples of the current-day authors who have done well while writing in multiple genres.
And while society as a whole somehow still scoffs at “jacks of all trades,” it’s those of us who are flexible and willing to see and act on the intersectionalities of modern life who are the future of the marketplace.
H. G. Wells was an excellent writer, and he wrote in various niches. You can certainly do the same.