Thursday, July 4, 2013

In Response to Jessewave's Rant

Jessewave wrote - "Why are M/M readers treated so disdainfully? Are we not on par with het romance readers? M/M romance has been around for a decade, so why can’t our authors get it right? Clearly we are not respected because if we were this wouldn’t happen, and so often. Would authors insert graphic gay sex scenes in het romances? Not f*****g likely, unless the book is a ménage or a bi romance, and do you know why?"

Authors of M/F romance don't insert M/M sex into books because of discrimination. They aren't allowed to. Many publishers actually require authors of M/M books to write M/F under a different name. Plain old DISCRIMINATION, that is why M/F romance books don't have graphic M/M sex.

As a straight woman, I can walk down any street with my partner and hold hands, never fearing retribution. I never have anyone tell me I'm disgusting, or sick. I'm never questioned about why can't I just try to be different. When I was in San Francisco for Pride, no one, and I mean no one discriminated against me because I was straight. Some people were surprised that I was just writing partners with LE Franks and not romantic partners, but every one was nice. Gay men and lesbians have to be careful in almost every situation. Sure, at SFPride the love was flowing and the "anything goes" atmosphere was alive and well. However, in NYC people ran into trouble.

Gay sex scenes are not included in M/F romance not out of respect for the reader but because the reader would throw a fit based on hate of gays. Gay hate, though less than in the past, is pervasive and though some people may have accepted that gays exist, they don't want to be presented with the truth that gay men like to suck dick.

Authors write. If they include a M/F scene in a M/M book, it's because the author thought it was needed, not out of disrespect for the reader.


Suz said...

I completely disagree with the statement, "Gay sex scenes are not included in M/F romance not out of respect for the reader but because the reader would throw a fit based on hate of gays."

As a current Managing Editor in a pub house that publishes a lot of M/M erotica and romance, and a former editor for several e-presses, I can tell you that it's not because our readers hate gays that there are no M/M scenes in predominantly M/F nooks. It's for the same reason that we don't often do the converse, i.e., insert a M/F scene in a M/M book.

Readers have specific tastes--it's not that they're haters. In erotica, it's not about politics. It's about what turns a reader on. Let's face it: these are stroke books. I've been told that straight women,not gay men, are the primary consumers of M/M fiction. So obviously these readers aren't haters. Their taste in erotica runs to M/M.

And others, like myself, prefer M/F (or in my case, M/F/M, but that's another story). And I am not a hater.

Suz said...

I also disagree with Jessewave's statement, "M/M romance has been around for a decade, so why can’t our authors get it right?" That's an unfair diss of the many wonderful writers out there penning fabulous M/M erotica and romance. Scarlett Blackwell writes scenes so hot I thought my computer would catch fire. I love Tara Lain's books, though I admit it's more because many are set in Laguna Beach, a locale I know and love. And Sara herself writes deeply felt, wonderful stories that feature M/M characters.

C. Zampa said...

One thing I have to say is that I,for one, write very little erotica.

My work isn't written to stimulate sexually but emotionally.

And that will be the case when I start to write het romance. (As of now, I've only been published in the m/m genre).

So---to say that women read the genre to be sexually aroused can't always be true because most of my readers are female. And they're sure not getting much arousal from my books.

So sometimes maybe it can maybe be more than about what simply what turns a reader on? Maybe more than just sex?

And the one het sex scene in my m/m novella was not erotic in the least. So far it's been well accepted by readers as a crucial point of view from the wife whose husband is in the closet. A huge signal to her that something was wrong. Not included for titillation at all.

I've read JW say that certain het scenes in m/m books contaminated the genre. 'Contamination?' A deadly, infectious disease infiltrating into the genre? No, with a comment like that, it's not about taste. It's about disgust for the inclusion of a man/woman scene in that genre. It's not about tastes. It's about prejudice.

And, Suz, PLEASE, I'm not disagreeing with your thought. Much of reading IS about tastes. Big time. I just mean to say that this recent moaning from JW about it is not an issue of tastes.