Texts are typically classified by researchers into one of two genres: narrative or expository. Narrative texts are meant to entertain (e.g., fictional novels and stories), while expository texts are meant to educate (e.g., text books and empirical articles) (Weaver & Bryant, 1995). One problem with this simple method for categorizing texts is that it is difficult to apply in practice, as there can be differing characteristics even within these genres that could influence reading processes (Wolfe, 2005). This is made more problematic by the fact that genre is rarely clearly operationally defined, which makes it difficult to know whether genre effects are truly due to genre differences, or due to other text characteristics that may be confounded with genre. This highlights a significant problem in current genre research, as the lack of a consistent definition makes it unclear how genre affects reading, if at all. The purpose of this dissertation was to investigate this problem through a review of the literature and to identify a new model of genre through an empirical exploration of readers' perceptions of genre. Participants read a unique, randomly selected text and rated the text on 260 adjectives. The ratings were then used in a principle axis factor analysis to extract the relevant factors that underlie reader's perceptions of genre. Nine factors were extracted and the adjectives that loaded most highly onto each factor were used to create a series of scales. These scales represent a possible basis for a new model of genre. By creating a clear model of genre that is more easily applied, future research can begin to determine the true impact of genre differences on reading processes.