I’m quickly becoming accustomed to hearing that I write porn (although I’ve usually had at least one coffee before it comes up). I knew that some people held that misconception before I even sent that manuscript in, so it usually doesn’t bother me. This isn’t a ‘defend my book and chosen genre’ post, because if I start defending it every time I hear the word porn, I’ll spend so much time doing it I’ll be an activist instead of a writer. And, quite frankly, activism sounds too much like work.
I think we’re all pretty familiar with yesterday’s RTB debate. And while it wasn’t the most laid-back conversation I’ve ever seen, any time the words bitch, Nazi, or freedom of speech aren’t used, it could have been worse.
Then I staggered into my office with my barely-sipped morning coffee and read the most recent comments:
To me, the book is either romance or erotica, but not both. When I think of erotica, I think of the books I read from Elloraâ€™s Cave. They werenâ€™t bad or anything, but they werenâ€™t romance. If you deleted ALL sex scenes, youâ€™d lose about 80% of the content. To me, theyâ€™re pretty darn close to written porn than anything else.
I personally prefer books with more meat (dialogue, character dev, plot, etc), and I donâ€™t get upset over sex scenes in books as long as theyâ€™re well written. Kushielâ€™s Dart by Jacqueline Carey isnâ€™t romance, and it had homosexual & heterosexual sex scenes plus group sex plus a masochistic prostitute heroine, but I never even blinked because the characters and the plot were riveting. It also helped that the sex wasnâ€™t 80% of the book.—Stella
I had a friend a while back, before I moved home to NH, who had the ugliest baby I’ve ever seen. If you’ve seen that Seinfeld episode where the baby’s so ugly Kramer falls down when he sees it, I bet this baby was uglier. Did I tell her that? Hell no. Other people and I may have discussed it, but I would never, ever have said to her, “Damn, that’s one ugly baby!”
If an acquaintance of yours has a baby, quits smoking, and packs on a hundred pounds, you may talk to your husband about it. You may talk about it with other people. Do you walk up to her and say “Damn! Did an all-you-can-eat dairy bar move in next to you or what?”
So why the (beep) can somebody come into a conversation that I initiated, and in which I am taking part and say, basically, “You write porn and your books suck and they have no plot.”?
This is (beep) Manners 101, people. When you were four and in the grocery store and you said “Mommy, do you see the size of that lady’s butt?” and she dragged you away, horrified, and lectured you on people’s feelings and keeping your hurtful observations to yourself? Same (beep) thing.
When did it become okay to say blatantly hurtful and insulting things to people, whether you believe them to be true or not? I’m seeing this more and more often every day on the internet.
And for the record, my book has dialogue. It has character development. It even has a plot. And, while it’s still being edited, as sold Twice Upon A Roadtrip was about 37,628 words, with about 5164 devoted to what I’d call sexual activity. That’s 13.7%. Yes, I went and checked.
And it is a romance. It’s a romantic comedy. My very lucky hero and heroine just happen to have some smokin’ sex on the way to their HEA.
Now, repeat after me: “They aren’t really my cup of tea.”
That’s all. Was that so (beep) hard?