Dinosaur Porn… WTF people?!

me and amy (2)All right, faithful readers.  Get ready.  It’s time for another Alexandra Christian: Shrieking Violet rant.  If you’re faint of heart or are offended easily, back out now while you still can.  Extreme snark ahead….

Have we finally sunk to the rock bottom of our culture?  Has the romance market finally become so saturated that we, as readers, are willing to accept any trash just to find something new and different?  Over the last few months I’ve come to realize that “like to hate culture” is killing art in America.

Think back to 2004.  It was the heyday of American Idol and other televised “talent” shows. There was a little show, passing just under the radar on the WB, called Superstar USA.  The premise of this show was to get a group of poor suckers to believe that they were going to be on a TV talent show looking for the best singer in America when in fact, they were looking for the WORST singers in America.  For seven weeks, viewers at home suffered through some of the worst Queen and Edwin McCain covers ever, voting on the one that was the most excruciating.  Was it hilarious?  Yes.  Was it humiliating for the contestants?  Yes.  Do I feel sorry for them?  HELL NO!!  The reason being, even if they were completely oblivious when the show was filming (doubtful), they were at some point told what was going on and they still made grabby hands at their fifteen minutes of fame like Veruca Salt at the Chocolate Factory.  And why?  Because being famous for being ridiculous is better than not being famous.  Apparently.

Which brings me to the purpose of my rant.  Today I saw no less than 2 news articles, 3 Facebook Shares and 5 Tweets about a series of books up on Amazon that are…. wait for it… dinosaur erotica.  I wish I were kidding, but I’m being dead serious.  Now, here’s the really depressing part—- the sales were through the roof.  The books have gotten NATIONAL attention.  Now, why does this peeve me?  Because myself and so many authors are struggling, literally struggling, to get our books into the hands of readers.  Authors that tell wonderful stories that are intelligent, beautifully written, have intricate and intriguing plots.  Books that transport their readers into a world where romance is still alive and adventure is waiting right outside your door.  But we can’t get noticed because we’re getting lost in a maelstrom of “books we love to hate.”  You see, it’s the same mentality as the Superstar show.  Whatever is the most shocking, the most offensive, the most ridiculous– the squeakiest wheel– gets the sale.

As many of you know, I do a lot of writing/sci-fi conventions to promote my books.  One of the conversations I have the most often on panels and with other authors are about how romance writers are the redheaded step-children of the writing business.  A lot of folks assume that writing a romance novel is easy.  That it’s not as worthy a genre as say, sci-fi or fantasy or literary.  The truth is, writing a sexy, entertaining and honest romance novel is hard work.  They are extremely character driven and require a lot of emotional investment on the part of the author and reader.  It ain’t easy.  And what truly pisses me off is that the dino porn, incest porn, rape glorification and borderline pedophilia porn that manage to get all this attention are perpetuating the myth that romance is not a worthy genre.  Perhaps this isn’t the intention, but I feel like the authors of these “shock” books are poking fun at the rest of us.

And the readers.

In short, I’m a damn good writer and I have hundreds of writer friends across many genres who are also damn good writers.  Those are the people who should be getting the big sales.  So now… all of you beautiful, intelligent readers– go forth and pimp your favorite writers’ books.  Tell the world how great they are through reviews and suggestions.  In an age of Miley Cyrus and Justin Beiber, be a champion for smart people everywhere!!  Remember:  you can read!

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4 thoughts on “Dinosaur Porn… WTF people?!

  1. As your best friend, partner in crime, and general writing buddy, let me just pop in and back you up by saying that I do write in the sci-fi/fantasy world as well as in the romance world, and anyone who tells you that writing romance is “easy” is full of it. Writing any book requires the same love and devotion regardless of the genre. If a “writer” is willing to compromise his or her integrity by schlopping out a book in two days and slapping it up on Amazon for the sake of chasing the almighty dollar, then it brings the rest of the literary world as a whole down.

    How are we, who still have at least a modicum of self-respect and dignity, supposed to prove that the IQ level of the United States as a whole isn’t completely in the toilet when we can’t get through the barricade of ignorance? What happened to reading a book for the love of reading? It absolutely infuriates me that those of us who write for the love of writing are the ones that struggle the worst.

    Plus it’s personally insulting to me to see that “Dino-rotica” is the big new thing. I’ll give it stars for being creative, but I can’t imagine that something that ridiculous can carry itself beyond a few awkwardly worded pages.

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  2. Seriously….I’m with you on the splash let’s make a buck kinda thing. Granted, dino-porn sounds interesting and I write dragons and other shifters, but oye…what is the world coming to.

    Really?

    *shakes head*

    Sometimes I wonder why I keep writing.

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  3. Preach it, baby sis! I refuse to believe we’ve sunk so low that the majority of readers would rather pay money for something stupid they can make fun of than something that might actually touch them or stick with them longer than it takes to tweet about it. The good news is, dino porn will have its moment – that will last barely a moment – and be gone forever. Good stories with real characters and genuine emotion will always work, and the audience will find them.

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  4. I write SF-Romance and/or horror-romance. We’re the kids they lock in the attic and throw a bucket of fishheads to once a week. There is nothing easy about the romance part. There is nothing easy about any genre.

    I’ve written tentacle porn. (Cyberpunk tentacle porn, involving a werewolf) I’ve written the incestuous urges that the characters keep bottled up tightly which make them ticking time bombs, affect their emotional interactions with everyone, spouses, lovers and the sibling in question. It worked for Hamlet, after all.

    But getting the emotion on the pages is always tough. We don’t remember John Carter a hundred years after his creation because he fought his way from the icy south pole to the icy north pole. We remember him because he did it for love of the incomparable Dejah Thoris.

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