Thursday, July 11, 2013

SM Johnson ~Thursday Morning Coffee~ Dare and Thomas

Good morning, Darlings, happy Thursday! Welcome to TMC: The Mighty Conundrum or... Teasing My Critics...

Every once in a while I go browsing for reviews. I know! It's bad! It's arrogant. It's being desperate for feedback from people who don't love me. A terrible thing to do.

But I admit I do it. Every few months I find myself surfing for reviews. Perhaps a little more often than that if I've had a recent release. I don't obsess about it, but I definitely have an appetite for learning what people think.

The primary feedback I've read about my most recent release, Three in the Dungeon, is that A) the story never goes where people imagine it will, and B) The Dare and Thomas story line was left really hanging.

So point A - Good! Great! I'm thrilled that the story doesn't go where expected. In some respects, I think a story never should, otherwise, why would you read it? I hope I get even BETTER at surprising you, my darlings, because I love that.

Guillermo Diaz 
Point B.... yeah. Dare and Thomas. And Zach, let's not forget sweet, sweet Zach, the most terrible Dominant in the universe. I mean no offense to Zach when I say this, either. Dare learns a lot from him about living true, about being yourself. But Zach isn't kinky. And, as Roman explained to Zach when they met in NYC, you can explain to a vanilla person what to do in a scene, but you can't force them to suddenly develop a kinky imagination. It doesn't work that way. It's okay for Zach to try. In fact, it's GREAT for Zach to try, it's very sweet and loving of him. It's not at all his fault that he doesn't get it. (This picture of Guillermo Diaz is very close to how I picture Thomas, by the way).

I'm sure I've said before... I write by the seat of my pants. I have a starting point and a sketchy map of where I'm going and what I want to happen. And I usually have a fairly clear picture of the end scene.

Dare (sort of)
Three in the Dungeon was about healing, about finding a "Home" in a new city, where one's reputation doesn't precede one. I suspect I failed to make clear how utterly humiliated Roman was when the Health Department shut down his club for obscenity. He was RUNNING from that humiliation when he went to Minnesota, and RUNNING from the fact that he was losing Jeff, and RUNNING from the fact that he really did love Dare, but he couldn't be with Dare because, no matter what, it would always be the wrong thing. It would be obscene.

So... yeah. I know Team Jeff hates that, but you know - it is possible to be in love with more than one person at the same time, and it is possible to make a choice, as an adult, to uphold the promises you've made to one, over any other. And even I don't know if Dare and Roman's story is over, but I do know that, in the end, Roman and Jeff will always choose one another over anyone else. That's like.... written in stone. THAT's the story. And maybe I wrote it incorrectly for the genre - I guess in Romance, the first person the reader meets is supposed to be the protagonist, and the first person the protagonist meets is supposed to be the one he has a happy ending with. The first person we meet in the series is Dare, right? So he's supposed to get the happy ending.

And I know so far the whole happy ending thing is a slow go for Dare - but do ya'll realized how much LEARNING that man has to do? And most of it is learning about himself. He's rebuilding himself, from the "gay" up, and it's not easy, and it's not going to be quick.

And guess what? I AM NOT A ROMANCE WRITER.

I write dark fiction and erotica. Not erotic romance. Erotica. Hopefully character-driven erotica with as much story-line as hot sex. I cannot guarantee a happily ever after for anyone. I cannot guarantee that every plot point is tied up in a neat little bow. Sorry. (I'm not sorry, that's just a totally a meaningless platitude). Life is messy. My books are going to be messy. And even as I get better at structuring them around plot and theme and characterization I suspect they're still going to be messy. I kind of like them that way.

THIS I do know - Dare and Thomas have a full story. And I plan to tell it to you. They actually have more story than I could fit into Three in the Dungeon, and so I made a decision to show you the beginning of their story, and save the rest so I could do them justice. I expect it's going to be hot, hot, hot.

Perhaps I should have added an end note (grin). So consider this the end note.

Yes, Dare and Thomas will get their own book. So now you know.

Have a great weekend, darlings!

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