Rose Montague is the author of Jade, a YA urban fantasy whose narrator is not only a female vampire (yay!) but also a bisexy witch (yay!). Or maybe she’s lesbian, I’m still trying to figure that out. (Labels – sigh.) Anyway, take it away, Rose…
I like this definition of conundrum:
A paradoxical, insoluble, or difficult problem; a dilemma.
For an author this situation presents itself when they write a book containing a LGBT relationship, even if that relationship is not central to the story. That is the situation I found myself in with my publisher asking me just a few days before my release if I wanted my book in the Lesbian Fiction category. I struggled with this question for several reasons. The fact of the matter is if a book is placed in a LGBT category people have the impression it has to be erotic fiction and if they are straight, they will not be interested in reading it. So if you put a book into that category you run the risk of turning people away from buying your book. If you don’t, then those readers that might enjoy seeing such a relationship might not know about it if they go looking for it, and they won’t buy your book.
My book is not erotica but it contains sexual situations and sexual innuendo both straight and gay. The book is an Urban Fantasy/Romance and the main theme in the book is friendship. It is full of action, humor, and mystery. It is the first in a series and the Lesbian relationship will progress into Book Two which I am in the process of writing now. I would rate the book as PG-13, and it is suitable for an older teen, in my opinion.
In real life, we meet people on a daily basis that are in both straight and gay relationships. Why is it then, in fiction we tend to separate books into gay or straight categories and just assume that if there is a gay relationship, it has to have a big warning sticker on it? Maybe it should have a badge of honor instead? It is what it is and in my opinion it is just a fun book and an enjoyable read. I have already taken some flack for not putting a warning sticker on my book and I have already heard from a few people in the Lesbian community asking why it is not marketed that way. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. Anyway, if you are reading this, you have been warned. Or maybe you have been intrigued.