Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Another Epiphany

Writing Addicted continues to be a lot of fun. I've written about 13,000 words in twelve chapters. Even I'm surprised by the direction the story has taken.

Addicted is the story of Josh Freeman, a 39 year-old gay man who finds himself suddenly single after a twelve year relationship ends. Josh assumes his life is over and that he'll never know love again. The three sex scenes in the first 13,000 words are not gratuitous--they serve a purpose in advancing the story.

Earlier this week I shared the first ten chapters with two of my most trusted straight female friends. I warned them about the sex scenes and worried they might be offended by the graphic content. I've been on pins and needles waiting to hear back from them.

They e-mailed me today with their reviews. They love it. In fact, though both are big fans of Glass Houses, they say Addicted is much better. One admitted to a blush or two and said she might never read Danielle Steele again. You could have knocked me over with a feather!

Upon further investigation, turns out that something like ninety percent of the people who read male/male romances are straight women! I had no idea. I figured the only people with any interest in reading gay romances were gay men.

If I'd have thought about it for even five minutes I could have figured it out. Gay men don't read romances--they watch porn on the Internet. Straight men don't read gay romances either, and until their wives find out also watch porn online. I don't see lesbians panting over male/male romances either. Straight women are the only group left.

I mentioned a few posts ago that Adrienne Wilder, future New York Times bestseller, invited me to join a Facebook group for people who write male/male romances. Very few members of the group are men. The majority of members are women.

When it comes to sex scenes in gay romance novels, I can ALWAYS tell if it was written by a woman. The good ones get 99.9 percent right...enough to fool the straight women who read this stuff. But to perhaps most men and any gay man, that .1 percent gives them away every time.

After sharing the reviews I received from my friends with her, Adrienne told me male writers of male/male romances are in high demand. In fact, many of the women who write in the genre use male pseudonyms and otherwise try to mask their gender. Nice to know the advantage goes to...

The Crotchety Old Man

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