This is a bit of a rant. Okay, more than a bit. Lately, I’ve received some unfavorable reviews for Fighting Faith. I can handle not-so-great reviews. My problem is people who complain about the content I warn about everywhere I sell the book.
***Warning – This story contains scenes of dubious consent which some readers might find objectionable.
Maybe I need to post it at the top of each page.
“They hate each other there’s scenes that make me thin[sic] of rape..”
“I know that angry sexual attraction can be hot, but it was sort of uncomfortable at points.”
“I have a pile of concerns about the story that I don’t feel comfortable with.”
“…eric was a big asshole for treating faith that way.”
The main character, Eric, is an asshole – to Faith anyway. This happened by design. I made him that way on purpose, not because I think all women secretly crave assholes, but because I hoped to show that we are all capable of doing things and acting in ways we never thought we would. We all act differently toward the various people we interact with – it’s like wearing multiple hats depending on who you’re dealing with at the moment. Think of the person you dislike most in the world. If you were thrust into a situation where you had to deal with them for an extended period, would you act the same toward them as you would your spouse? Your child? Your parent? Your best friend? What if you really disliked a person, but at the same time wanted to fuck their brains out? If lust (or any emotion for that matter, but we’ll stick with lust since this is erotica) drives us to behave in a manner we deplore, does it change who we are as people? Does a switch flip from ‘good person’ to ‘bad person’ because of one action?
It is my goal as a writer to make the reader think, consider the possibilities, and to make them uncomfortable…because that’s how I roll. Don’t like feeling uncomfortable? Don’t read a book with an uncomfortability warning. If readers want a gushy, feel-good read, they should stick to Fifty Shades of Grey. Oh, wait. Never mind.
To quote my dear friend Annie Walls (she said I could), “but they LOOOVVEEE Christian Grey… and his, “I need to deal with the situation of your virginity by plunging my dick into your virginal hole, and no, I won’t be sorry about it. Eat your fucking FOOD before I beat you with my belt and get off on it!”
But seriously, if you don’t like being uncomfortable, read something else. Lots of books about puppies and rainbows out there. I assume.
Stories are supposed to tug at your emotions (more than just the one that makes your twat tingle or your dick hard. Wait, is horniness an emotion? Oops), make you ask questions, and I believe good stories make you ask yourself the really tough questions. Eric and Faith are insanely fucked up by the overwhelming lust they feel for each other. They both act uncharacteristically because of it. The reader gets to decide if their actions change them from decent people to scum-of-the-earth kind of people. End of story. It isn’t because it’s a novella rather than a novel that their ‘issues’ aren’t addressed (another frequent comment). If readers give the story more than a superficial read, they know the characters’ flaws, what kind of people they are deep down, and that everything will work out just fine.
End of rant. For now. And while I love puppies and rainbows, I refuse to write about them. Shit! I forgot…there is a rainbow in Fighting Faith. I will now shamefully crawl back into my little writer cave.