For the last week, I harassed my followers
For the last week, I harassed my followers on Facebook and Twitter to vote for me in the BetterSex.Com Erotica Contest. The challenge was to write a short erotica piece based on the “top ten female fantasies.” Submissions were collected, and then a number were passed through to the public voting phase; next, judges will read the top-voted pieces and select winners from that group. Winners will be announced June 25th.
I’m having more success with this erotica gig than I am with straight fiction writing, and it’s both a little confusing to me, and, in some ways, disappointing (depending on the day). I have no shame in writing erotica, nor being viewed as primarily an erotica writer. I’ve met some lovely people in this genre, and have been included in anthologies with some remarkable writers (check out Anything She Wants, from LadyLit, edited by the fantastic Harper Bliss for my most recent publication). I like writing erotica, and, apparently, other people like reading it.
This non-daily sense of vague disappointment comes from the fact that, until recently, I’d considered myself a creator of lit fic/contemporary works. I still am, but the success in this is much slower-coming. Despite being the self-proclaimed Queen of Rejections (I’ve weathered 50+ for my first novel, and am well over a dozen since I started submitting erotica and straight short stories), rejections still hurt sometimes, and it’s hard to take it when it’s in the area you really love most – in my case, my quirky little stories that rarely involve cock.
I think, too, I like the idea of a well-rounded career, and I like the idea of getting my sticky little hands all over genres, even as disparate as they might be. I’ve recently finished editing my New Adult novel, and, this spring, wrote a magical realism story for the YA set. I’m currently about 1/3 through writing a lit-ficcy-type story involving time travel, mental illness, and death, and recently completed, with Laila, an NA novel set during a zombie apocalypse. Oh, and we’re editing our erotic romance right now, too.
I’ve got submissions out, both for erotica and for straight fiction, both short and flash, and hope to have the NA novel ready for query after I return from Boston next month. Despite any kind of disappointment I might feel occasionally (whether it be in my own ability or a sort of sulk involving my theory that anyone who doesn’t like me is a stupid head), I do understand my part in it, and how the only way to move past it, is to just fucking keep going.
After all, if you don’t try, you’ll never achieve it, right?