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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Things To Never Say To A Romance Writer

I found a wonderful blog written by Author Simon P. Clark, entitled Eleven Things Never to Say to an Author, dated May 28, 2013
It's so true, and funny, that I wanted to share, so I modified it to fit Romance Writers and added a few "never say" statements of my own and thoughts from my friends at RB4U. So, if you aren't a romance writer, the next time you meet one, make an effort not to indulge in the following:
1. "You write romance novels? Wow. I wish I could do that."

Response: You really don't. It's hard work. You have to invest years in learning the craft, and then you have to spend hours at a hot computer in your underwear coming up with new and clichéless ways of describing an accelerated heart beat, sweat, and how put to tab A into slot B. You have to experiment. You have to... Why are you leaving?
2. "Writing a romance novel sounds like fun. I think I'll take a month off and write one."

Response: Your profession sounds interesting too. Maybe I'll take a summer school course and become a brain surgeon just like you.
3. "If you write novels, why are you still working?"

Response: I like to eat chocolate and drink wine.
4. "You write romance novels now? Wow. What does it feel like not having to go to work every day?"

Response: Like going to work every...and every night...and on weekends. And we don't get a vacation or sick leave, either.
5. "I have a great idea for a book..."

Response: Good. Write it, and come back in ten years.
6. Variations On Theme One – The Real Book
●"Your book is so good. I'll bet you could even write a real book."
●"Oh, I get it. You're going to write a romance novel now, and then later you'll write a real book."
"Is writing this stuff going to interfere with your real book?"
●"Now that you're writing smut, are you ever going to finish your real book?"
●"I don't care for reading porn, but I enjoy yours. Do you ever write real books too?"
●"You're a writer? Cool! Romance novels? Oh, that's too bad."
Response: Yeah, just those pesky romance novels. It's a good thing they don't require some of the most creative, discerning, demanding, open minded readers around, eh? Aha ha. Ha.
7. Variations On Theme Two - Romance=Porno
● "I don't read bodice rippers."
● "I don't care for reading porn, but I enjoy your books."
"Do you practice all those love scenes yourself?"Chuckle, chuckle.
● "I read a romance novel the other day. How can people read such trash?
Response: You mean you can read? Well, that's a start. And why are you ogling my cover?
And by the way, weren't you all
a-twitter the other day over reading "Fifty Shades of Grey"
8. Variations On Theme Three
● "You wrote a romance novel? That's wonderful. When will it be published?"
Response: That all depends on whether or not I can sell it. First I have to find an agent. Then the agent has to send it to publishers and convince someone they want to buy it. Then there's the contract. After that it takes a year to get into rewrites and editing. After that...
Well, maybe around 2020. Can you wait that long?
● "You wrote a romance novel? That's wonderful. Send Me A Copy When It's Published."

Response: Yeah, right. Are you kidding, you a-hole? You not only expect me to give you a copy, but to pay postage on top of that. Why don't you sacrifice one cup of Starbucks and buy a copy?
● "You wrote this?"

Response: Nooo, I'm just wasting time sitting in Barns and Noble selling and signing someone else's book. What? Do I not look like I could write a book?

9. "Who's Your Agent? Can you recommend me?"
Response: Who's your psychiatrist?
10. "Oh, my cousin's brother-in-law's aunt writes books about saving money doing your own laundry...I think."

Response: Cool. Do you have any booze with you? Hard drugs, maybe.
11. "Aren't Romance Novels dying out?"

Response: Something's going to be dying in about four seconds, and I guarantee you it won't be romance novels.

12. "So How Much Money Do You Make Writing Romance Novels? It can't be very much."

Response: Here's a fun new rule. It's called Don't Ask Authors Things You Wouldn't Ask Other Intelligent Adults.
13. Will You Put Me In Your Next Book?

Response: Don't tempt me. I might. I might not. Do something interesting and let's see. Why don't you start by stripping down in public?
14. I Hate Reading.

Response: It's the strangest thing! When someone says 'I hate reading', I hear 'whop me upside the head.'
15. You Could Be The Next Nora Roberts.

Response: I think that name is already taken. Besides, she's a woman, and I'm a guy. I don't think her pants would fit me.

What are your favorite "Don't Ask" Questions?
As an author or a reader, what can you add to this list of "don't say" experiences? Make a comment and expand the list.


Sandy said...

Ann,this is a good topic. Everyone of us has met some idiot who says the most innane thing about our writing books.

One think I hate hearing is: Don't tell me how easy it is to write a book when you haven't written one.

Melissa Keir said...

What a fun post! And so true. I love the one... where can I get your book...oh it's only an ebook. Let me know when it's available in print.

By the way, I teachers also get this type of thing all the time... My favorite is "I don't know how you do your job each day. I'd go crazy". Yep... this is why I write!

R. Ann Siracusa said...

Melissa, the 'oh, and e-book?' reaction happens to me a lot. It doesn't help that I'm old enough that many of the people I know--who might read my books (and even enjoy them)--won't read e-books. Yep...

Rose Anderson said...

Great post Ann. So true!

DEW said...

Men who discovered that I write novels - THAT kind of novel - would go slightly off-kilter. Some thought it great I had a hobby. Others wanted to read the naughty bits. Others thought that the sex-discrimination and sex-harassment laws suddenly vanished. As a professional, I was restricted in my response. Eye rolls and walking away. For the really bad ones, I just smile and remind them I sleep with a gun. For the persistent I remind them I am a trained sex-therapist and nothing shocks me. Smile sweetly and walk away. (I am an engineer who worked in all male environments most of my life.)

Tina Donahue said...

LOL - love it. Thanks for sharing.

I have had so many comments like this, that I NEVER EVER EVER EVER tell anyone new that I write.

It's my secret. :)

jean hart stewart said...

I get amused at the comments when I tell someone looking at my grey hair that I write erotica. Think the whole thing pretty funny...

Nikki said...

LOL!! Some of these questions...haha...and the responses were great!

Rose Gorham said...

Loved your post. I think I've been asked most of those questions. But I can't remember if I answered them back graciously...mmm???

darlene deluca said...

How 'bout "Oh. I don't have time to read . . . Hey, did you see that last episode of . . . (insert Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, The Good Wife, etc., etc.)?"

R. Ann Siracusa said...

Thanks, Darlene. Can I add that comment to the list?

Marianne Stephens said...

Are the sex scenes from your own experience?
I've answered, "Maybe some, but I'm very creative."
I've gotten the "Oh, you write romance books?" like it's a contagious disease...and not "real" writing. Sigh. Can't please everyone.
Great post!

Kayelle Allen said...

My favorite is "Oh, I wanted to write a book." // Yeah? Well I did. Twelve of them. So shut up. LOL Great post!

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