The first one was a few months ago from a woman who said she enjoyed both my erotic and non erotic books and thought my F/F scenes were very authentic, but wanted to ensure I was a lesbian for her to continue reading my books. I thanked her for her kind comments, but told her I was happily married to a man. She told me (sadly, she assured me) that she couldn’t continue reading my books since I was heterosexual. Then just a few days ago I had an email from someone on Facebook asking me to confirm if I was a Christian, because she couldn’t in good conscience continue to read my paranormal erotic romances (which she said she truly enjoyed) if I wasn’t a Christian. I answered her nicely saying that I really appreciated her kind comments about my work, but that I hoped my fans enjoyed my work for my characters, worlds and stories and that I didn’t feel my spiritual beliefs entered into the equation. She answered back saying that if I were truly a Christian that I would’ve proudly stated it and promptly unfriended me. I won’t even get into the sad irony of that particular argument :) which would be an entirely different blog...
Neither of these are the norm within my fan mail, gladly, but I thought they were both rather interesting. Both readers clearly stated that they enjoyed my books, which to me speaks for itself. After all, when I read a book, I read it for enjoyment.
Have we really reached a point where personal affiliations and life color the actual writing to that extent? I’ve read some Stephen King, but I truly hope that within his personal life he doesn’t go around murdering people in macabre circumstances, and I can’t imagine sending him a “fan” mail saying as much. I think I could understand if I was being outspoken about something that they found personally offensive – fair enough for them to choose with their consumer dollars where not to spend their money. After all, that’s the beauty of consumerism. But both of these situations left me a bit puzzled and bemused since that’s not the case. Now let me state, I’m not ashamed in any way of my personal choices or state of being. I just feel that if people enjoy my writing, those things don’t matter or come into play. I’m a good person and am tolerant of others and their views, and I suppose, naively I expect the same in return from others.
Am I being shortsighted? Is this the new face of being within the industry?
I’d love to hear your thoughts...