TheReadEye

"We read to know that we are not alone." — C.S. Lewis

It’s time to take pride in our love of gay fiction

I’m relatively new to this authoring business (although I’m an old hand at the aspiring bit). Recently, I told a couple of friends that I’d written some books in the gay romance genre. Their first reaction: “Oh, you write gay porn? Good for you!”

Okay, so they’re more open-minded than some people, and that’s good. But why would their first assumption be that gay romance equates to porn? If I’d said I write romance stories, would they have made the same leap? Probably not. And that’s what makes so many of us gay romance writers and readers hide out in our own metaphorical closets. I suppose a few people are embarrassed to read mainstream romance, but the bigger issue is the misconceptions about gay romance.

Yes, gay erotica is a subset of the gay romance genre. But it’s not the entire genre. There’s sweet romance and romantic suspense, paranormal romance and so much more in the genre. Some of these books contain erotic sex scenes, some contain tame sex scenes and some contain no sex at all.

lanyonbookI have to thank Josh Lanyon for drawing me into the genre. If I hadn’t come across the Adrien English series — a fantastic set of romantic mysteries — I might not have delved further into the genre and discovered many more quality authors of LGBT books.

Lanyon’s series also demonstrates an important point: gay fiction — even gay romance —  is about a lot more than gay sex. The Adrien English series should appeal to any reader who enjoys a good amateur sleuth story. It probably won’t reach a lot of potential readers because its protagonist is gay, and that’s a shame, because Adrien and Jake’s love story, as it unfolds over the course of the series, is complex and deeply moving.

Right now, I’m new to publishing. I’ve written a few novellas that are sweet gay romance stories centered on a small-town newspaper staff and their sources. I hope to keep evolving, and to someday write something as meaningful as some of the highly regarded authors of LGBT books.

Authors and readers alike should take pride in their love of gay fiction. It’s just as good as any other genre, and if you ask me, it’s a heck of a lot more interesting than yet another boy-meets-girl story. After all, that’s the story of my life. I don’t really need to read about it.

You can find the Adrien English series here. Josh Lanyon has many other books available as well, but this series is — in my opinion — his best work.

If you’d like to explore my writing, you can find the Ashe Sentinel Connections series here. They’re also available on most ebook retailers, including Oyster and Amazon. The first book is free. My third novella will be released Oct. 1.

 

 

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3 thoughts on “It’s time to take pride in our love of gay fiction

  1. That’s so true – that everyone seems to immediately think ‘porn’ when you tell them you write gay romance. Mind you, some of the book covers I’ve seen certainly don’t help that stereotype. I’m new to publishing too, though have been writing m/m for YEARS. I look forward to following your journey (which I know has already started; I’m only slowly getting on the boat to the wider m/m world!)

    • DJ Jamison on said:

      Thank you for the comments. I know what you mean about the book covers — I lean toward tasteful, but I understand sex sells — and I’ve seen my share of racy covers for heterosexual romance, too. It has its own challenges to overcome, but I don’t think anyone immediately thinks of “porn,” even when they talk about more erotic novels.

  2. 100% agree with you!

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