I know, I know, today should have been a guest blogger - I'm starting to think I make people nervous. I've had very few bites lately. That's ok, though. I'll leave this space open on Sunday for anyone who wants to put themselves in front of a new audience. Maybe it would help if I explained why?
Guest Blog Sundays and Shameless Promotion Thursdays are part of just one of my dreams. The erotic writing dream is two-fold - write and publish my own BDSM erotica and possibly earn a small income from it and help others achieve similar goals. Whether a writer wants to publish and earn money or whether they simply want to find a wider audience, I want to help with that. Devoting two days a week to my blog for that express purpose is simply a way to achieve one of my goals.
BDSM-themed erotica (and erotica in general) tends to get a bad rap. Yes, much of it is poorly written - and yes, there may be people who think mine is poorly written. By and large, though, erotica is simply discounted as throwaway material. Erotica writers aren't "serious" writers because the point of our writing is sex. I don't know about any other erotica writers out there, but trying to find a way to describe fucking, licking, and sucking without using the same three or four words is hard as hell. Trying to describe a sex-scene in a fresh new way is hard as hell. Coming up with new scenarios that could conceivably happen is sometimes hard as hell.
I realize I'm not automatically granted a wide audience for my writing because I know erotica isn't for everyone but don't discount what I and other erotic writers do. I work hard to put together stories. A short story of mine was rejected this weekend by a writer's group to which I belong. That rejection stung - badly. I was told that the story I submitted wasn't romance - that there was no romantic story involved. Because the majority of the story was sexual in nature, it could not be a part of the project. I'm not going to lie - I cried. I took a story with characters that I'm emotionally invested in, gave them a richer story, and yes, there was a strong sex scene, but there was a story-line. I used Stroke for Stroke as the basis for the story. I gave the additional character a name, a personality, and a viewpoint on the world. I delved (briefly) into the minds of all three characters. I'm proud of it. But, it didn't fit.
I realize that in the writing world, I will probably run into this time and time again. Each time, my feelings will probably hurt a bit. I'm pretty tough, though. My dream feels right to me - regardless of whether others agree - and I won't be swayed by rejection. What I want to do has value to someone, somewhere, even if I'm the only one who sees the value of what I'm doing.
I'm sticking with BDSM-themed erotica (and possibly romance, one day) for two reasons. I live (as much as possible) the D/s lifestyle - anyone who's been here for more than five minutes knows that. And I believe in the old adage, "Write what you know." I'm not good at fantasy writing, and I don't have the ability to create worlds. What I can do is take something common place (or not so common place) and bring it to life. I can make BDSM, specifically D/s, real to the world because I live it. And maybe, just maybe, I can help people realize that BDSM is not scary or wrong or unhealthy or insert-negative-adjective-here.
For whatever reason, the dream of being an erotic writer is more tangible to me than my next endeavor, my next big dream...
I know I've mentioned it before, but I want to own my own company. I want to work for myself. I want to be a digital marketing consultant. When I look at what I do professionally, the part of my day that I'm passionate about is digital marketing. What the hell does that mean? Blogging, websites, and social media. Specifically, I want to help small businesses. I want to share real-world advice for the small business owner that wants to do it themselves but needs a resource. I want to offer my services for the small business owner who knows they need to do it but doesn't have the time or inclination.
I'm excited about my dreams and my plans. My instinct tells me that I could really do this, I could really make this work - with effort, of course. But in those darker moments, when I worry about earning a living, or when I'm rejected by someone else, I wonder, "How dare I?" What gives me the right? How dare I have the audacity to dream?
When that little voice of doubt becomes louder, inspiration finds me again. I hear a song, I read something, I have a conversation with someone, and I find myself believing again. I can and will do this. It will require time, patience, and hard work, but I know I can achieve my dreams.