Adventures in Writing: It’s not me. It’s never me.

Authors around the world want you to know:

It’s not me. It’s never me.

(Unless it’s a true to life story, which then it may (or may not) be exaggerated, your mileage may vary.)

Adventures in Writing

You have no idea how much I want a tattoo of, or a recording of, “It’s not me. It’s never me.” because of how often I say those words. I write BDSM, but I don’t live in the lifestyle, so how could it be me in the story if I’ve never experienced what I’ve written? I have people who are amazing and live in the lifestyle that tell me ‘yes this works, no that doesn’t work, try this instead.” and it gives me an edge.

The adage “write what you know” is rarely good advice because I have an imagination and what I know is unlimited thanks to that imagination. (I also have access to this little thing called the “Internet” and it contains Porn. Lots and Lots of PORN.)

Look at Science Fiction. If we only wrote what we knew, there would be no Star Trek or Star Wars or Starship Troopers. What about Fantasy? The billions of words written in fantasy books may not exist. Perhaps they do, elsewhere, but they don’t exist in our everyday lives.

These books containing alpha males that override the heroine’s good sense to walk away by kissing them – if that were real then the entire world over would be full of women with men they didn’t want to be with but couldn’t seem to walk away from and every time that man kissed them they got drenched in the panties and bent over backwards to do whatever they could to get him to kiss them again, and more.

So, when an author straight up tells you that “No, this character, nor any other character I have written about, is me (or you for that matter).” believe them. Stop asking them. Readers are more than welcome to pretend that characters in the stories I write are me, if they so wish but please, pretty please, remember that they aren’t. It’s just another “thing” that authors have to deal with in life. It’s a huge reason why many authors – especially erotica authors – don’t tell anyone what they write. They don’t want the questions, the recommendations, or advice unless they ask for it.

And, before you say something that sounds like “but it’s flattering for them to think it’s you…” I just want you to know that it’s more creepy than flattering. If you want to imagine a character is me, that’s fine and dandy – but I want you to keep that tidbit to yourself. Don’t tell me, don’t tell the world. It can be your little secret in a circle of one.

What are your thoughts about this topic? Do you have a standard answer when people ask you which character you are?

Do you tell friends, family, etc. what you write and allow them to read your stories?

Share your feelings and views (remember to be kind) in the comments.

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  1. Sadly no, most of what I write about has never happened to me. But I wouldn’t mind dating a professional hockey player. I’m sure if I could get one of the Flames to notice me, my hubby might not complain as long as we got tickets. LOL.

    1. That’s how it is with most authors. Even when an author states they are writing about their own personal experiences I raise an eyebrow. Simply because there’s always going to be a little embellishment to make it much more exciting.

  2. I think what the reader is talking about is the emotional content. The way two characters relate may or may not come from somewhere personal. I just finished a book and the main character has a big nothing in common with me. But the settings are snippets of places I’ve been. The emotions are drawn from my gut. I kind of lay the emotion on top of scenarios to make them make more sense.

    With that said, I’m not my characters.

    However, I was actually just thinking about this subject today in a bookstore. My next project may be a fake autobiography: part true, part fiction, but using the same tone throughout. So when someone says it’s me. I might respond: “Well, I don’t know, maybe. You tell me.”

    1. Be careful about a fake autobiography, that could get you in more trouble with fans than people who actually know you, when they find out parts of it are fake. They’ll be more apt to reject even the facts, then.

      Mostly, this post is regarding how far people have gone to actually out someone who writes erotica or erotic romance under a pen name. People have had their secret brought into the light of day, been stalked, and mistreated, simply because people thought they were the character. But, I’ve actually had people tell me they can’t read my first person pov because they hear my voice or see me, and then think I’m not telling them things going on in my life.

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