Monday, April 11, 2011

What an Erotic Romance Author is Not

I was at a close friend’s house the other day when her sister showed up. I’ve had a few dealings with the sister, not many. But she knows I’m a writer. She’s even read some of my books and complimented me on them. As our conversation progressed, she asked me what I thought was an off-the-wall question. She inquired if I’d ever been one of those phone sex women, who get paid to talk dirty on the phone.

I was so taken aback by her question that I was momentarily stunned into silence. I asked her if she’d seriously just said what I thought she had. She still didn’t get that she’d insulted me and asked the question again. Now maybe I was being overly sensitive but I equate paid phone sex to dancing nude in a strip club.

I explained that I've studied the craft of writing for many years, that I have a college degree in Journalism with a minor in English (from the same university where she went to law school), that being offered a publishing contract isn’t something that just happens after one writes a sex scene. She never did really "get" it, but what can you do?

Other questions people (sometimes strangers) have asked me have been just as weird. Do I conduct my own hands-on research? To this, I always reply, “Of course. And for my romantic suspense books I’ve murdered people who ask rude questions! Just for research, you understand. Nothing personal.”

Do I know the person on the cover of my book? I attribute this question to a Hollywood view of romance authors who hang around photo shoots all day. (Although there is one Ellora’s Cave author who is on the cover of her own book, but that is a fluke.)

My husband fields the questions he gets way better than I. Favorite question from his coworkers – Are you teaching your wife all she needs to know to write what she does? To which he replies, “Of course.” Another question he is asked at work -  Is that your wife on the cover? His automatic reply? “For sure.” (I have lots of different looks for my twenty plus covers.)

For all you erotic romance authors out there, what’s the strangest question anyone ever asked you? And for you readers, is there anything you want to know? Now's your chance to ask!

And lest you think I've forgotten about shameless self-promotion, here it is;-) I have a brand new book out and you can get it HERE or HERE. And tell me that's not one gorgeous cover!

Game of Smoke and Mirrors

When Jia Mason’s estranged husband turns up missing from their Florida vacation home, Jia is the prime suspect in his murder. Afraid she’s being railroaded by the police, she flees to New Hampshire in search of answers only to be arrested there.

Zack Sizemore is tasked with extraditing the beautiful fugitive back to Florida until a blizzard strands them with nothing but their mutual attraction to keep them warm.
When they stumble upon a deserted cabin, Jia sees her opportunity to charm Zack long enough for her to escape. What she doesn’t count on is falling for the handsome lawman. Or the danger that awaits them in the remote cabin.


KC Burn said...

Oh, my! Love your hubby's responses!

I must admit, the only questions I ever get (since I write m/m) is "how do you know what you're writing is right?" and "why do you write that?" I have a number of stock responses that I trot out, but more often than not, people just look like they've swallowed their tongue. I've had a number a people who are pretty sure I'm playing a trick on them, but because they're not sure, they just move the conversation on...

Wynter Daniels said...

KC - I've had people clam up when I mention what I write. I love shocking people!

MaureenAMiller said...

I love the comeback about Romantic Suspense. You go, Wynter!!

I've been asked if there are any drawings in my books. :)

Debra Glass said...

I live in the south and I get the same questions, although I've never been asked about the phone sex. A relative (in law) once told me she only read non-fiction because she didn't want to clutter her mind with anything from which she couldn't learn. This woman TEACHES reading. My response to the research and development question is, "Stephen King doesn't really kill people, does he?"

Wynter Daniels said...

Maureen - drawings?? For my erotic romances, I wouldn't even begin to imagine what those drawings would look like;-)

Belle Sloane said...

So sorry you had to hear that kind of stuff, and from a person who was intelligent enough to get through law school. Hmmm?

My day job is in a middle school, so I don't talk about it at work much. When it does come up, people often clam up at the subject. But I mostly get asked what my husband thinks about what I write. They also ask if I do research with him, I let them know he's my biggest fan and the best ever technical advisor. :-)

Good luck with your new one.

Wynter Daniels said...

Debra - Hard to believe a teacher would say such a thing. I guess every English major I've ever known learned nothing in college, according to that logic!

Wynter Daniels said...

Thanks, Belle. Technical Advisor? I like that.

Elizabeth Schechter said...

Interesting. I actually DO know a romantic erotica writer who was a phone sex operator. (Ask me at a meeting and I'll tell you who. You might know her.)

There's a T-shirt that I keep threatening to get for my husband. It says "My wife writes romances. My life is GOOD."

Wynter Daniels said...

That's hysterical, Elizabeth! Now my curiosity is piqued.
Love the T-shirt saying.

Michelle Polaris said...

You guys both have great responses. I don't think people have a clue.

Wynter Daniels said...

I think you are right, Michelle!

Dalton Diaz said...

I got my DH a Research Assistant shirt as a joke. He wears it. In public.

Paige Tyler said...

Aren't people too much?! My hubby is my research, too! Someone once made some snide comment like, "you get paid for that stuff?"