Monday, April 8, 2013

Soapbox Soliloquy

As many of you fun friends know, I'm reader of all.  I may enjoy tearing out my readers hearts and then stomping all over them writing tales of teen tragedy and transcendence, but my reading lists are vast and varied.  It's nothing for me to finish a mystery/suspense where the body count is into the triple digit and leap headlong into middle grade book about mean girls and popularity contests. That said, I follow many authors (both on the Facebook & Twitter) whose genres are scattered all across the board.

I sit here now, a little saddened by something that transpired on a fellow author's Facebook fan page over the weekend.  I'm not going to go into too many details, but I will tell you this: The author in question writes Romance, most specifically, ADULT Romance, and even then leaning toward the light and comedic, not the dark twisted tales that someone like, say ME, would come up with.  This author posed a simple, fun question on her page in regards to her new hero's profession.  I commented, of course, and then went on about my day.

Later, when I logged back into FB, I found another comment, one that not only jumped to the absolutely wrong conclusion, but (IN MY OPINION) leaped headlong into the perverted rabbit hole and called the author out for an imagined crime.  In true Karla-fashion, I responded with a comment that was a little more snappish than I probably should have.  But, I was a little angered, and absolutely shocked that anyone could draw such a line from an adult romance writer asking whether her readers would find a teacher hot.

Now, I can see this commenter making assumptions like that if someone like me (a YA writer with a penchant for pushing the boundaries in my own writings) might have posed this question.  But, how said commenter drew this conclusion when it is absolutely obvious (AGAIN, IN MY OPINION) that this author only writes ADULT novels with ADULT characters is beyond me.

I logged off FB still a little angry, but then the sadness came.  My heart grew heavy with the knowledge that if this commenter made such a statement, surely there were others that were thinking along the same lines.

How is it that the first thing anyone thinks about when a simple, supposed-to-be-fun exercise in reader involvement is the absolute worst imaginable thing?  Why do we look at a stranger in the mall and think, I bet you have a dozen bodies chopped up and stored in your freezer, or you just have the look of a pedophile, or even, you belong in a padded cell because there just aren't enough drugs out there for your level of crazy?  Why do we turn on the news and expect to see stories of violence and mayhem, but then turn it off when the newscaster turns to clips that are meant to inspire hope and goodwill?

Have we become so jaded, so desensitized that not only do we barely flinch when the worst in people rises to the surface but that we expect nothing less?  I think that's what kills me most, how true that really has become.

And, it's just wrong.  On so many levels.  *end rant*