I was in line at the bookstore yesterday when two young men behind the counter began discussing a certain book a lady had just requested over the phone. The book? No, not one of mine, but Fifty Shades of Grey. One guy said he was going to have to read it to see what all the controversy is about. The other guy casually commented that he has "read better", leaving me to wonder what and who he might be reading in our fair BDSM genre. If only they knew what I write, or I'd had the guts to chime in and suggest this one particular author named Katrina Strauss. Perhaps I'd have been braver if I'd been at the hair salon eavesdropping on fellow middle-aged women. (Another BDSM author on Twitter reported that very scenario and actually made a few book sales out of it.)
Funny that I'd find a hair salon a more conducive environment to self-promotion than a bookstore, eh? The thing is, outside of one convention appearance, I'm not comfortable going "public" and prefer to restrict talk of what I do and "who" I am on the Net. Even Anne Rice originally wrote her awesome Sleeping Beauty series under a pen name. As more readers emerge from behind the anonymity of online personas to discuss books like 50 Shades, I wonder if more of us hardcore erotica authors might be able to step out of the closet alongside them? With the BDSM genre recently garnering mainstream attention, I'm already seeing potential signs of trickle-down affecting my Eldritch Legacy sales. (My M/M BDSM series Blue Ruin seems to be gaining renewed interest as well, but that appeals to a different readership. It's the Eldritch books that are suddenly shooting up my rankings list these past few weeks.) I've heard similar reports from other BDSM authors, so I suppose we shall see.