I couldn’t start my inaugural post at Love, Lust, and Laptops without first thanking my fellow authors for welcoming me to the party. I’m so excited to be here and really appreciate the opportunity to talk love, lust, and other fun topics alongside such a talented crew of authors!
So where to begin? No better place than the beginning, right? Some people are born to dance, sing, play soccer. I’m lucky I can cross the street without tripping over my own feet. And when I sing Wheels on the Bus to my 2-year old niece, she frequently says: “No sing.” I think that’s toddler speak for “you’re ruining my jam, Auntie.”
I like to think I was made for other things. When I was seven years old I wrote a story using spelling words and somehow made my mother cry. In that moment, my love affair with words was born.
The stories I enjoy telling the most are love stories. Stories about the truth of human relationships—the pain, the angst, the humor, the horror—with a dose of romance and a dash of sex. (Proportions estimated… I also don’t use recipes when I cook…)
In college, I got into a spirited disagreement with a lesbian woman in one of my women’s studies classes. At the time I was dating the first guy I had ever dated (yes, I was like 20) and Christina was a plaid wearing, combat-booted, short hair toting butch who lived with her femme girlfriend. Christina would not accept that I had any idea what life was like for her, as a lesbian. I disagreed. As a compassionate human, I don’t think understanding someone else’s story is impossible. Walking a mile in someone’s shoes does not yield the same blisters… but it’s a hell of good way to start understanding.
I believe thinking and feeling people can understand experience and emotion vastly different from one’s own. On a really simple level, if we couldn’t do this, why would anyone watch horror films? I for one have never stabbed a zombie in the head, nor have I had a serial killer stalk the mansion where I was babysitting children, but I sure enjoy experiencing those things in books and film. Of course it’s not the same, but doesn’t hate happen when people refuse to see the sameness in us, in spite of the differences?
So Christina: girl, I get you. I did then understand in theory what your struggles were like. And I do even more so now. Since college, I’ve come out to myself and the world as a lesbian. So, I really, actually, in my own life “get” what Christina was talking about. And maybe back then my understanding was influenced in part by my own awareness and questioning.
Back to writing. I write a lot, about everything, anything that strikes me. But my lesbian romances have been really well-received by straight readers. Why is that? Don’t het people skeeve out when they read about same sex love, lust, etc.? Some do, I’m sure. But I think many readers see the truth in human experience that underlies any enjoyable story—no matter what uglies happen to bump in the end.
I’m really happy to be part of a group of authors who represent diverse stories, characters who are human first (unless they are aliens!) If you want to check out excerpts from lesfic (that is, lesbian fiction, or women-centered fiction), please stop by my blog. I’m promoting a new anthology that I’m in called First Ladylove. Seven authors have put together stories and we’re promoting excerpts from each book. You can check out my story, Fixin’ Biscuits, and learn more about little old me.
I’m so excited to be a part of Love, Lust, and Laptops. Expect to see the lesfic perspective represented, but know also that we’re all human. Truth, love, romance, sex, story. We’re all in this together! Right, Christina?