Border's Books holds regional meetings with all the district and store managers of a particular area. Ellora's Cave was invited to the regional meeting for the upper midwestern states and EC asked Jaid Black, Tawny Taylor and me to attend with them and to help represent the company. Honored, all three of us accepted and Jaid (being the founder of the company) gave a speech. Unfortunately, I didn't get to hear it as my flight home was at the same time. :(
The trip, however, was glorious. We were treated like celebrities every moment...by the terrific staff of the Crowne Plaza (the one right near the airport in Chicago), by the Border's personnel, and by our own EC bosses...Patty Marks and Jeania Uplinger. I practically didn't need that plane to fly home!
And then...reality. Every once in a while I check my sales ranking at amazon.com, more out of curiosity than anything else. Most of my readers purchase my books through EC (for the downloads) or brick and mortar stores (for the paperbacks). So yesterday, I go to www.amazon.com and check the listing for SECRET SUBMISSION. Imagine my surprise to discover a new review! I'm always eager to hear what people have to say about my book and even if they didn't like it, I like to know why.
Well, there are two reviews of SECRET SUBMISSION (DIAMOND STUDS has only one and IRISH ENCHANTMENT and TABLE FOR FOUR have none). The one that's been there a while is glowing, and the new one...isn't. I got trashed. No, more than trashed. I got beaten to a pulp, stomped on, and left in the gutter.
Now, like I said, I know what I write isn't for all people and I don't expect everyone to like it. But her one comment, about the fact that "there was no romance, not even the slightest bit," got to me. You can read her whole review here.
I had to think about it a while to understand why her comment ticked me off so much. Like I said, I know BDSM isn't for everyone. And that's when it hit me. It's not just that she's dismissing me, she dismissing everyone who's involved in the lifestyle as well. There IS romance in that book...a ton of it. But it isn't sweet and pretty, it isn't all hearts and flowers. And it isn't vanilla. It's softly gritty...it's the thorns instead of the roses (in fact, there's an incredible non-fiction BDSM book called SCREW THE ROSES, SEND ME THE THORNS that explores the psychology of D/s and bondage...plus a whole lot more). All my writings explore a different type of romance than the traditional.
I read through some of her other reviews and that became clearer...she's reviewed lots of books and I think it's wonderful that she takes the time to write down her thoughts. She admits this is the first BDSM book she's ever read...LOL...Secret Submission is rather tame compared to some of the online stuff...although it is pushing the envelope in print fiction.
To the readers of my books who also read this blog, I have a request. Take a moment and write your own reviews of not only my books, but of the books you read. Just a line or two is sufficient for amazon.com...although I've read other's reviews there that are huge! LOL Your comments help writers to understand how the world views their work. Plus, it's a great chance to let the world know your opinions.
Okay...off my soapbox and off to write a whole lot more BDSM...