In the past few weeks, I’ve received any number of comments in person, through email, and book reviews that have made it abundantly clear I can’t make everyone happy with my writing.
Over in the far left corner, we have those who feel like I’m “squandering the opportunities to spread the gospel” and preach to people through the stories I create.
Over in the far right corner, there are those who term my books boring because, “it would have been a great story if she’d included sex scenes.”
In the middle, are those who enjoy a book full of love and romance that is sweet and clean. (I dearly love those people in the middle!)
After so many comments coming from so many different directions, I thought I’d take just a moment to clarify why I write what I do.
The people who think romance and sex are the same thing have bigger problems than finding my books boring.
Romance is such a beautiful, lovely thing that is too often ignored while something more base and elemental claims that title.
In my humble opinion, romance is the journey that may lead to something more. And rest assured, that something more will not be described in great detail in any of my books. Not going to happen. I do not possess the ability or desire to write sex scenes. To me, it would be like whipping out the binoculars and trying to spy into a neighbor’s bedroom. Some things are sacred and private.
As for those who are disappointed my books don’t carry a strong gospel message or “preach from the keyboard,” I’m sorry you feel like I’m wasting opportunities.
Yes, my characters pray, they attend church, and they exhibit good morals, but that doesn’t mean I’m wasting chances to reach people. I’m not a minister, I don’t shout my beliefs from the rooftops, and I don’t expect my characters to do that either. I’m more interested in my characters providing good moral examples. Sometimes the best approach is a soft one.
And to answer the next question – yes, I am a Christian. However, I do not plan to turn my books into a platform for blasting out my own beliefs.
So here’s what I’ve concluded: I can’t make everyone happy.
In fact, I’ve probably offended a dozen people already this morning, just because they are easily offended.
If I try to write to please everyone, pretty soon I’ll please no one (especially me) because I will have lost my voice and my way.
For those who want sex scenes – you’ve got imaginations, feel free to use them.
For those who want more gospel messages – please know that I’m aware of your opinions and appreciate them even if I have my own.
Do you ever find yourself being pressured to do something that isn’t you? That would make you feel uncomfortable or off course?
Just remember – you’re in charge of your happiness and sometimes making you happy means others won’t be.
And to those lovely, lovely people who enjoy my books just as they are – big hugs to you!
Thank you for understanding that I just want to write clean stories that touch your hearts, make you sigh from the sweet romance, and hopefully make you feel like you’ve made a new friend by meeting the characters.
Each Monday I share my thoughts on happiness in my own personal Happiness Project for 2014. Feel free to post your thoughts or comments on happiness.