My father turned seventy-eight a few weeks ago. It’s hard to buy a gift for a seventy-eight year old man, but I had a spare galley of my next book, Just Like Me, Only Better, so I wrapped one up and sent it along. (I sent a throw blanket, too; I’m not cheap.) It wasn’t until the book was in the mail that I thought: Is it wrong to send your father a book that contains a sex scene that you wrote? Okay, what if the sex takes place in a car?
I still haven’t decided the answer to that one, but I got a bit of a reprieve; my sister nabbed the galley and took it home with her. She has since finished the book (and recommends it highly), but while she did mail it back to my father, she sent it book rate, so I figure I’ve got a while. I guess it’s not a big deal. After all, my dad has read my books before. And he likes cars.
It’s funny. Years ago, when I was toiling away on my first novel, hoping and praying that someday people would read what I wrote, it never occurred to me to think, Oh, crap. Someday people will read what I wrote. My books are not even remotely pornographic. They wouldn’t even qualify as steamy. But they always include a romantic storyline, and where there’s romance, well – you know.
When I write, I give a lot of thought to reader reactions. Will people find this funny? Do they need to know this? Will they get bored if I don’t move the plot along more quickly? But, weirdly, I don’t think about potential embarrassment factors until the book is out of my hands. To my relief, relatives, neighbors, even my kids’ teachers (actually, especially my kids’ teachers) take my characters’ romps in stride.
Well, almost everyone. A while back, on the evening my husband finished Just Like Me, Only Better, he put the pages down and looked at me with wide eyes. I waited for him to gush about my brilliance and say that I’d outdone myself yet again. That sort of thing wasn’t included in our marriage vows, but it should have been.
Instead, he started sputtering. “I can’t believe … that scene … her naked butt hit the windshield? It’s just – I’m kind of shocked.”
“Grow up,” I told him. “It’s just a book.”
For more about Carol Snow and Just Like Me, Only Better please visit www.carolsnow.com