If you think it’s hard getting your thriller or paranormal romance reviewed, you should try being an erotic novelist.
I sent my latest work to a reviewer and she was very sniffy about it. “That’s not respectable fiction,” she said. “That’s porn.”
I was not prepared to take that lying down. “I’ve put my heart and soul into that story,” I told her. “Give me one reason why it’s not a legitimate piece of art.”
“Take the opening,” she said. “Three scantily-clad women on a beach are being long-lensed by a pervert. That’s a classic voyeur story.”
Encouraged by her use of the word classic, I said, “He’s not a pervert. What man wouldn’t ogle three near-naked beauties given the chance?”
“All right,” she said, “then there’s the bit where the woman is in the pool and she’s thinking about masturbating instead of going shopping with her friends.”
“Inner conflict,” I said. “All women have to juggle their lives. This is a universal problem. You can hardly call that porn.”
“OK, what she thinks about in the pool might not be porn but that shower scene! That is most definitely porn with a capital P, O, R and N!”
“Character development,” I explained. “The man watching her is a catalyst for change and when she strips off her bikini, she is, if you like, shedding her skin and showing that she is ready to move forward in her life.”
She wasn’t even listening. “And I hardly dare even mention that sizzling sex action on the bed,” she said.
“It’s a metaphor!” I told her. I was getting exasperated now. “It’s a metaphor for empowerment.”
“Did you have to depict everything in such photo-realistic detail?”
“That’s where the artistry lies,” I explained patiently. There is no telling some people. “Besides, I was enjoying myself. Is that so wrong?”
So don’t ask me how to get your book reviewed. Most reviewers are simply on a different planet.