Monday, March 16, 2015

Publisher/Author Spotlight: Less than Three Press's Megan Derr talks about Love for the Ladies

 by Megan Derr

I have always been a romance junkie. Growing up, the books I most often read were my mother's, which was mostly a whole hell of a lot of romance and a lot of horror. As I got older, I started adding my own books to the pile, mostly fantasy.

But it was the romance I always came back too, over and over again. I liked the happy endings better. I liked how they focused on the characters, how they could be about saving the world or just some massive, stupid misunderstanding. I like the variety that romance offers, while at the same time always promising me these two (or more) idiots are going to fall in love in the most difficult, melodramatic way possible.

Eventually I found my way to m/m, where I found a home like so many other readers and writers. But I'm a military brat; I'm not very good at holding still. And instead of stopping at m/m, I kept going, because it's romance I love, and that exists for more than just straight and gay people.

Not everybody enjoys straight romance. Not everyone enjoys gay romance. Not everyone enjoys lesbian romance. But more people might like all of the above if they were willing to give it a fair chance. There is this ugly mentality in the m/m romance community that 'girlie bits' and any sex that is not one cis gay dude fucking another cis day dude shouldn't be present. The romance community at large has always been a place built by and for women, and the m/m community boasts a hell of a lot of women. Those same women that stand up for the rights of gay men and how they should be accepted and love is love… turn around and bash books and authors for including women and het or lesbian sex.

And that's not cool. It's one thing not to like something. It's another to be hateful and misogynistic. To say that women don't belong in a genre heavily populated by women.

Do I think people should read what they dislike? No. I fully support the right of people to read, write, and enjoy slave fic, but I will never like it myself. If someone tried to force it on me, I'd get mad. Beyond dislike, there are countless reasons people might be flat out uncomfortable with reading it.

Do I think more people would like lesbian fiction if they were willing to give it a fair chance? Absolutely. How many people have come to the m/m genre on a challenge or a whim or to follow a favorite author and discovered a whole shiny new world of awesome stories they never knew they loved?

We should be willing to give lesbian fiction the same chance.

If you enjoy lesbian fiction, we've got plenty for you :3 If you're looking for something new, been bored lately with what you're reading, or just feeling adventurous, try one out, you might be surprised. If you want a challenge, here you are.

Eighteen stories made it into the final Damsels in Distress collection, and there's something for everyone. We've got fairytales, the Wild West, World War II, pirates, spies, mercenaries, and much much more.