I don’t know. I honestly don’t know.
I’ve been questioning a lot lately if I’m writing for the love or for the glory. No doubt, it’s for the love, but I would like to have just a smidge of glory.
For whatever reason, reviews have always eluded me. I will release a book and it’ll debut in three Top 100 lists in Amazon but I’ll get next to no reviews. Like none. I’ve come to accept, at first, that maybe I’m just a big seller but no one wants to review me.
Then it became increasingly hard to accept.
It’s very humbling to go on Amazon and see your book listed next to your contemporaries and fellow authors, but their books have 20, 30, 50, or even 300 reviews. And not one of your own has 100. And each release has less reviews than the one before. The more book reviews I have, the more books I’ll sell, the more I’m inclined to write/finish others. You see how this works? Ask any other author; they’re bound to tell you the same.
Then I’ll get the questions -
When is S&M coming out?
When will Eli and Faith’s (D’Amato Brothers) story be out?
And I’ll wonder…if I release this book, what are the odds of you reviewing it? I bet some of you now can’t honestly say you would.
There are three camps of Vera supporters – the ones that review everything good and bad, the ones that review what they’ve read, and the ones that don’t review at all. And I know the third party exists because they have told me they don’t review. Not sure if I’m the special one or if they just don’t review any author.
It’s discouraging. Some people will only review if they know they’re getting something in return. I used to offer snippets and sometimes, free books. Then I stopped. And maybe I shouldn’t have started to begin with. How many times can I prostitute myself in order for someone to review? I actually had someone say had she known a free book was going to be offered, she would’ve reviewed Anticipation.
Then I started to question my allegiance to the IR/MC category. Being in an interracial relationship, it was nice to write and read about my own since I can fully relate. But I wondered, what was/is my overall goal? Do I want to be known as a great IR/MC author? Or do I want to be known as a great author, period? Do I still want to cater to a category that shows me little to no love? At what point do I say, ‘I’m going to be faithful to my people even though they’re starving me’ and ‘You know what? These White people are making me fat so I’m going to keep entertaining them?’ Where do I draw that line? Why should there even be a line?
It’s an issue I’ve addressed all year so I’m not sure why the surprise of me leaving, should I follow through with it, is there. I’ve come to accept that I was either heavily ignored or many of you honestly thought I was full of shit. Worst case scenario, and probably the true one in this situation, it was a combination of both.
I have several Vera projects in process so I’m debating if they’ll get a release date. I’m more saddened by the end of the D’Amato Brothers for the fact I had eight books total planned (only four have been released) so I’m trying to accept that there might not be another D’Amato Brothers. I actually wrote to my editor and canceled the date I was going to send Love and War to her. Yeah, it’s that serious.
As far as S&M, I don’t know. I don’t feel comfortable knowing the very last S&M storyline was in Wait for Love and there are a lot of unanswered questions with that but I’m very hesitant to release anything else.
Honestly, we need to start supporting our own. We are so quick to put each other down and so slow, so very slow, to support each other when needed. The IR/MC category should be flourishing like the YA genre, like the regular erotica category, etc. But there’s too much shadiness and infighting not only amongst ourselves but some readers are pitting author against author. A lot of us have never even met each other. Like seriously, people, we can be our worst enemy.
I personally, have only spoken with and consider to be friends with a small handful – Jamallah Bergman, Ancelli, and Francette Phal. I don’t know the others. I wish I did. Maybe it’s too late.
In conclusion, I’m not quitting writing; I have too much love for it. But I’m not too sure if I’ll release anymore IR/MC books. After a while, the begging and pleading for reviews gets old. Maybe the lack of reviews just tells me it’s time to move on to something where Vera and the Vera brand will be appreciated.
And there you have it,