I recently had an author leave a comment about how much they appreciated my book for being sweet. They then proceeded to rip apart dark romance books, stating that they’re all spice, rough, and non-con, and told me to continue writing sweet books and scenes.
The thing is, I don’t write sweet. I write dark romance, and I’m appalled they decided to leave that comment, much less on a post that clearly said it was a dark romance novel.
When I started writing my first book, I didn’t know anything about dark romance. I didn’t find out about dark romance until after I published, and I realized that my book was dark romance. It wasn’t pitch black, and I doubt I’ll ever write a book that is, but as my trigger warnings grew, so did the darkness in my world.
I’ve never seen any shame in that. I know my books may not be for everyone. They may be too dark for some or not dark enough for others, too spicy or not spicy enough, have too many twists and turns or not enough for others, or be too highly priced for some. And that’s all okay.
We have different tastes and preferences. If we were all the same, then there wouldn’t be any true creativity in this world because only the exact same books would be selling. And while I’m aware authors are just people at the end of the day, we do have a public image to maintain.
Commenting on another author’s content and stating that you love that it isn’t dark, while tearing down dark romance for those who love it and seeming to almost state that it’s nothing more than just r@pe is…ridiculously unprofessional and incredibly harmful. And as an author who has been around for twenty plus years, you should know better, do better. Identify your shame and work on that internally. Because it’s not for me to teach anyone or align with everyone’s perspectives.
I’m allowed to align with my own and with the readers who love my work.