Friday, September 20, 2013
On (not) Jumping on Reading Bandwagons
Let me first say that people should read whatever they want to read. I'm all for that. I have plenty of really good friends who have excellent taste and who love erotic romance and erotica. And writers have the right to explore themselves creatively. However, it is distressing when your authors you enjoy decide they are going to follow the trends and publish what's selling well, and you don't read that. I'm not going to name names right now. I'm still processing. I may do so later. Right now, I will speak generally.
I think many who follow my reviews and know me in the reading communities know I am not into erotica. I've been called prudish and narrow-minded, judgmental, and sexually repressed. I don't think I'm any of those things. If I am, it doesn't matter. I just don't feel the need to read a lot of erotica. Occasionally, I will read some out of curiosity, but being squeamish about content, I carefully vet what I read. However, that seems to be the main thing that sells right now in the romance genre. Here's the thing: sex hasn't changed since man first existed. Sex is still sex. Do I need to read every sex act on earth to feel satisfied as a reader? No. Do I need to see characters in a book indulge in kinky sex to feel the love? No. Does having more detailed sex instantly translate into a better story or more intense, vital writing? Certainly not. Don't believe me, read Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. I think that the problem is that this is the perception now. That romance readers need to see everything to get a fully-realized story. That every bonafide romance fan with taste is jumping on the bandwagon, so you need to join them or get lost. Where does that leave you when you're not interested?
Should I stop buying books if the trend is going that way? Should I just avoid said author's new series if I don't want to read an erotica book? And funny enough, she was hot enough as it was without going there overtly. I don't see the need, honestly. And I wonder if she will add more 'forbidden acts" or just change the terms to the raunchy ones for certain body parts that I can do without. Should I keep my mouth shut about my disappointment because I know many other readers don't get where I'm coming from? While they think they are more sexually awakened and comfortable with sexuality than I am, I might not agree, but should I keep quiet and just make a note not to read those books? Maybe the erotica trend will see its time and dependable authors will realize that some of their loyal fans were loving them for what wrote all along, and there was no need to follow the trends to sell books.
I want to believe that, but it's hard right now.