Tag Archives: LGBTQ

Give Your Readers a Warning


Author Lauren Carr just helped me solve a dilemma. I’ll explain.

In a story I am working on, there are bigoted characters–as there are bigoted people in real life. There are bad guys–as in real life. And a few of the scoundrels look and behave differently than me.

Nevertheless, as a new novelist, I wondered what the reading public would think about my story, especially if their own family heritage were the same as the despicable characters in my book. When I wrote the story, I never gave the cultural or sexual orientation or race issues a thought. I simply told a story.

Once the story was essentially complete, it dawned me that several of my friends were going to find ugly characters in my story that resembled them in some way. Would they feel differently about me because I cast a negative character with their ethnicity or sexual persuasion?

Apparently mystery writer Lauren Carr had similar concerns because she included the following disclaimer in the press release for her new book:

Best-selling mystery author Lauren Carr takes fans of past Mac Faraday and Lovers in Crime mysteries down a different path in her latest whodunit. “Don’t worry,” she says. “We have plenty of dead bodies and lots of mystery-as well as intrigue, suspense, and page turning twists.”

However, Lauren does issue a warning for readers. “The key job of a fiction writer is to look at a situation, make observations about how things are and how they work, and then ask, ‘What if …’  This is what I have done with Three Days to Forever.”
Lauren Carr’s latest mystery plunges Mac Faraday, Archie, David, Gnarly, and the gang head first into a case that brings the war on terror right into Deep Creek Lake. “Current political issues will be raised and discussed by the characters involved,” Lauren says. “It is unrealistic for them to investigate a case involving terrorism without these discussions.”
With this in mind, Lauren reminds her readers that “Three Days to Forever is fiction. It is not the author’s commentary on politics, the media, the military, or Islam. While actual current events have inspired this adventure in mystery and suspense, this fictional work is not meant to point an accusatory finger at anyone in our nation’s government.”
Consequently, I am considering a disclaimer, to make the reader aware that  I acknowledge there may be sensitivity to character portrayals. The disclaimer also reminds the reader that the work is fiction.
Have some thoughts? Please share them. This is a site for learning.
P.S. In the “draft” version of this post, paragraph spacing is correct. In the “published” form, there are spaces missing between paragraphs in the final section. It is a format error on WordPress’ part. I can’t fix it.

Niche Market Publishing–LGBTQ and Others


My chosen market for writing is plain vanilla: I write murder mysteries with no special lifestyle twist. There is also a untold number of other writers competing with me.

One way to achieve success is to write for a niche market.

In a recent conversation, a friend said to me, “Have you considered writing man on man romances?” My answer was I hadn’t. I am not a man. My friend informed me that a segment of women writers were writing man on man love stories with financial success.

I forgot about that conversation until today. While researching the author of the Argo story, I stumbled upon an article about a publishing house owned by two women. I clicked on the link (pasted below at the end of this post) and learned that the publishers specialize in children’s books for LGBTQ families.

I was familiar with LGBT, but was uncertain what the Q was.

According to http://ok2bme.ca/meaning

LGBTQ is a short form or acronym that means:

L”esbian “G”ay “B”isexual “T”ransgender, “Q”ueer or “Q”uestioning

Once again, I was reminded that niche markets exist everywhere. One Twitter follower of mine is I. M. Telling. Telling writes stories exclusively about bi-racial sexual relationships. Another niche market.

By now, everyone knows about the success of Fifty Shades of Grey, a self-published hit in erotica that touches on specialized sexual niches. According to The Guardian, Fifty Shades “contributed to an overall rise in digital and print sales in 2012.”  Wow! How is that for the power of a niche market?

The unusual nature of the niche markets described here is to make you realize that, as an author, you can write about anything, and there is likely an audience for it. If you are finding it hard to break the financial success barrier in a plain vanilla market like mine, you may want to consider exploring a niche market for which you have an aptitude and interest.

http://twolivesbooks.wordpress.com/