You Don’t Like Sex In Gay Erotic Romance Books, BUT, Gay Porn Films Are Okay With You?
Over the weekend I saw a few interesting posts and comments on social media where some people stated they don’t like sex in gay erotic romance books…they skip over the sex scenes or they just don’t read them at all…but they are just fine with gay porn. Not gay porn in books. I’m talking about gay porn like in films, where gay men (or more likely gay for pay straight men) have all kinds of sex with other men…for money. Gay Internet porn, where there’s no love or emotion; just sex. Gay porn, where you’ll never see a happy ending, on screen or in real life.
I’m no prude. I have no problem with gay porn (or any porn) and I’ve written my share of gay erotic romance books and stories. In fact, I support anyone in the adult entertainment industry because more often than not they are exploited for little compensation, and objectified more so than anyone else on the planet. It’s not an easy life, not by any means. And these days, with everyone getting their porn for free, the money isn’t even as good as it was at one time. So make no mistake, I do not judge porn or the people working in the industry. I’ve known people who work in the porn industry and I’ve seen how hard their lives can be.
What I’m curious about is the concept that some people, evidently, dislike sex scenes in gay erotic romance books, but they see nothing wrong with glorifying gay porn. I honestly don’t get that entire concept. I don’t have a problem with either porn or erotic romance. But more than that, I don’t have a problem with gay romance novels that don’t have any sex at all. In the past year, every single title I have released has been a gay romance with NO explicit sex scenes. They’ve all been PG rated. There’s really no specific reason for this other than the fact that I didn’t think the stories needed sex scenes to move them forward. And I will write more erotic gay romance in the future.
When I released two versions (yes, two versions of one book) of Chase of a Dream I believe I was the only writer out there who ever self-censored his own books in order to give readers a choice. So far I think I’m still the only one who ever did this. There is a full length version of Chase of a Dream, and a censored version. One has explicit sex scenes, one doesn’t. While I did this to give readers a choice, I also did it to show that it could be done. I’ve always believed the definition of a true erotic romance is a book where the story is still able to remain strong without the sex scenes. The sex scenes should move the story forward, but that’s it. In Chase of a Dream I only had to remove about 7,000 words, which was nothing for a book that long.
I also did this with Meadows Are Not Forever. This book was originally released with a completely different title, through a publisher. And when the rights reverted back to me I decided the book didn’t need sex scenes, so I removed them and changed the title. And to my own surprise, Meadows Are Not Forever has received some of the most positive unsolicited book reviews I have ever had. And I’m truly thankful to those readers who left these random reviews because I wasn’t even sure myself if I was doing the right thing by removing the sex scenes. (You never really know for certain.)
With all that said, what’s up with these conflicting opinions? I don’t get it. They skip over sex scenes in gay erotic romance novels, but they smile, giggle, and take selfies with people who produce the most explicit gay porn videos on the Internet? That doesn’t make sense. And just how is the gay porn industry connected to happily-ever-after gay erotic romance novels? I don’t see a connection. Gay porn films are not even remotely connected to book publishing. And again, I’m not judging porn films, but I do not see the connection. Even mainstream books like Fifty Shades of Grey are NOT considered porn. The FSoG movie wasn’t a porn film. It was an erotic romance.
So it’s really not even possible for me to draw a conclusion this time. I’m only trying to point out that there’s a big difference between publishing happily-ever-after gay erotic romance novels that celebrate love and marriage, and producing gay porn films that are just about sex for the sake of sexual pleasure. Both are valid, both are professional, and both are entertaining. BUT, both are very different.