Friday, February 22, 2013

How R.L. Stine inspired a a horrifying thought about my career.

Hey all, sorry it's been awhile. I've been busy with school and working on blog posts for my upcoming virtual tour.

This week has been exciting. First off, Publisher's Weekly reviewed BITE ME, YOUR GRACE! Other reviews are starting to come in as well.

And this is where R.L. Stine comes in. This morning, he tweeted this:

"#notmakingthisup This morning I read a review of an historical romance novel called: Bite Me, Your Grace."

For those unfortunates who do not know who R.L. Stine is, he is a magnificent author of children's and teen's Horror. He may have even invented it. I asked my husband if there were horror novels for kids in his day and he said no. Poor husband.

Anyway, R.L. Stine is awesome incarnate. He's one of my childhood heroes. I devoured more of his "Goosebumps" books than candy when I was a kid.

As a teen, I eagerly embraced his "Fear Street" books and found myself crying for a fictional cheerleader in a sucker-punch death scene. I HATED cheerleaders, that's why I picked up the book. I wanted to see bad things happen to them...Yet there I was, bawling like a little baby when one met one of the most gruesome, twisted ends I'd encountered outside of the Nightmare on Elm Street films. It was the ultimate inspiring lesson on making characters sympathetic.

Mr. Stine is magic.

Creepy Crack for Kids!


I was dizzy, gasping, and all "OMG" for hours before I could reply. I explained the ironic fact that the title was a joke I threw out on twitter, but people liked it so much it stuck. Then, as professionally as possible, (i.e. not squealing like an insane fangirl) I told him how much I loved his books.

Hours later he replied: "Yes, I knew it was supposed to be funny--and it is. A great title. Best of luck with it."

I told him I was honored. I hope he didn't think I was offended by his original tweet. Quite the opposite! I'm still swooning!

...But yeah, it got me thinking. 

From critiques to contests, to some early reviews, some people have disliked this book. It never bothered me, especially when their reasons were totally on-base and understandable. I've hated books other people loved. Art is a subjective business. Frankly, it would be disturbing and strange if everyone loved it.

...But what if one of my heroes hated my book? Stephen King reviews books all the time and doesn't pull punches. What if he talked about my book the way he did with a certain series he disliked? 

Or what if other heroes posted vitriol about my life's work?


Oh wait. No. I'd LIVE.

My mother-in-law read my book....which contains SEX SCENES! Okay, tame ones, but still... And when it comes out, my father will read those SEX SCENES!

My husband will never read any of my writing because he is anti-books, even when it comes to his wife.

If I can live through that, then I can live through the prospect of my idols disliking my work.

Besides, I have to live through it because that's a professional writer's job.

And R.L. Stine rocks!  

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