Brains? IR Readers Have Them.
When asked why they write romance, most established and aspiring authors give you one of two answers:
1. I read a book that annoyed me greatly and found myself rewriting it in my head. After a while, I realized that I liked my ending better and started writing from there.
2. I write books that reflect the life I live on a day to day basis.
Personally, I write the kinds of books that I always wanted to read but couldn't find.
However, no one ever mentions those mediocre authors that write because they think, "this is so simple, a trained monkey can do this." Or worse yet, those lackluster authors that start out making their mark in a more "mainstream" genre that switch to Interracial Romance or Erotica because the readers are beyond eager for books and stories and it's quick, easy money.
Many of these authors are unskilled and woefully unqualified to write for either of these genres.
What makes them unqualified?
Lack of research and assuming that readers of both genres simply want a hot book featuring an interracial couple and no substance.
They write what they only THINK the reader wants without doing what most readers of their genre of choice do most often....buy everything that's in print and available online and read it voraciously and repeatedly. Followed by what most best selling authors do: crack a book or twenty, search the web and/or call an authority on Interracial Relationships or Erotica and interview them.
Why don't they do this?
Well, too often they think that writing these genres are easy. After all, all you have to do for an IR is decide which of the couple you want to be black and change a few skin-tone references and voila! You have an IR. Meanwhile, they haven't a clue that women and men of color, regardless of how fair their skin is, rarely ever have rosy nipples. They assume that inserting a few vulgars words in at the right place makes a tepid love scene that would put a nun to sleep, erotica.
Unfortunately, in today's world, with the increasing number of e-publishers wanting their share of the "literary pie" it seems few are truly putting out the kind of quality books that most life-long readers want, need and desire. For them, like those authors that think it's easy to write for these audiences, they think it's quick and easy money. But as readers, too often we're getting heat, but no flavor and romantic bon-bons filled with nothing but air.
IR readers deserve more. They deserve to have authors writing books about their lives that understand them, their struggles, triumphs and culture clashes. They need writers that know that Tiffany Marie knows what to do with collard greens and proves it every Sunday. While Jason knows that his woman would sooner ruin a new pair of shoes than let her hair go "back." Kwame, insists that his love wears her sunscreen to protect her alabaster skin and Latoya won't let her man go to the hockey game alone.
But when you have e-publishers and authors more interested in the end result...more money in their pockets....the reader gets the boot to the head and the aspiring author such as myself ends up holding the bag and looking stupid when they try to defend their chosen craft and genre.
Someone really needs to clue-in the e-publishers and these unworthy authors and tell them we're not crazy enough to continually buy their garbage, support their pitiful skills and pamper their overinflated egos. Instead, we'll continue to re-read Sandra Kitt, JJ Murray, Jeanne Summerix and other well established authors until a mainstream publisher discovers what they did: That if they print it, we will buy it and gladly. Because believe it or not, IR readers have brains enough to recognize which authors love the genre as much as we do.