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Dee Blue waves
brit_columbia

 In response to A2M4snj who left me that nice review on AFF:  I don't know if it's possible to keep it a secret.  So far I've managed to keep my Yaoi obsession a secret from everyone in my non-online life for a year.  Sooner or later they'll find out, but it will probably be due more to carelessness on my part than from any great feats of sleuthing by anyone in my social circle.  Here are several tips for those who need to keep the lid on their interest in Yaoi :

1.  Stop talking about it.  The more you talk about how interested and excited you are about anime and manga, the more people are likely to ask questions.  Usually, they're just asking questions to be polite, but then you have to come up with answers.  I recommend talking about your interest only occasionally.  You do, after all, have to explain why you spend so much time tapping away on your computer, so pick a couple of innocuous shoujo titles and say you're interested in them and you're writing fan faction.  When people ask to read your stuff, say that you're embarrassed about how bad it is, or something like that.  Or just stall.  Say, "It's not ready yet," or I'm not satisfied with it yet,"  or "I'm not comfortable with anyone reading my work right now," or something like that. 

2.  Keep your real life and your online life separate.  If you confide to anyone in your actual community or family that you have an interest in Yaoi, then there's always a chance that they'll tell someone who'll mention it to someone else and then it might get back to someone whom you would rather keep all this a secret from.  There are no real secrets among families and groups of friends. They often know each other's secrets, but can't let on to knowing because then the person who blabbed to them is going to get in trouble.   At any time your cover could be blown by the person who knows.  If you want to discuss FAKE and other shonen-ai, Hentai, or yaoi, do it online with like minded people.  Never tell anyone in your real life your pen name or online identity.  Even if you have, don't worry because they've probably forgotten.  But it's best not to do it in the first place.  Or give them a bogus one and let them waste time searching online if they're going to be sneaky about it.

3.  If you share a computer with roommates or family members, don't store your files on the hard drive if you can possibly avoid it.  Someone might accidentally open something you've written.  Alternatively, you could get a gmail account that is separate from your usual correspondence and store all your files online.  That way they're accessible from any computer and no one can stumble across them unless you forget to close your email on your home or work computer.  Don't worry about the "lack of privacy" everyone talks about in email programs.  The average person in your life can't get in.  As far as I know, it's only non-human programs that comb email looking for keywords to gain insight into your plans to blow up the world.  The CIA doesn't care what kind of lubricant Dee and Ryo are using. 
     Or you could store your files on your hard drive under boring sounding names like "Industrial Comparisons"  or "Mashed Potato Recipe" and then make sure that page one is something innocent and dull in case anyone flashes on it.

4.  Speaking of boring, never underestimate the power of 'dull and boring' to make people go away and stop asking you questions.  Everyone I know in my real life is unspeakably bored by my interest in manga and anime.  They've pretty well all stopped asking me about it in case I start going on and on about it.  Just because it's fascinating to US doesn't mean that it is to everyone.  Pretty soon they'll stop asking you about your writing too, in case you hand them a giant dull manuscript and they get stuck (a) reading it and (b) having endless discussions with you about it.  That said, any whiff of a yaoi lemon will draw intense interest toward your activities, and as we know and fear, it could well be negative interest.

5.  Never under any circumstances give anyone in your real life one of your stories to read, no matter how proud you are of it. ( I'm talking Hentai, Yaoi and Shonen Ai; everything else is fine if you really feel you must) That goes even if the person is gay-friendly.  First of all, is that person an expert?  An executive in the publishing industry?  Who cares if he or she likes it?  They're either going to lie and say they liked it when they didn't, or they're going to suggest you change all kinds of things based on no more than their own personal bias.  Get yourself an online beta who loves your work, and then post it online where the people who have a true interest in that kind of thing will find it.  Even if your work is no good, SOMEBODY will like it and that will make you happy.  If you give it to someone in your real life to read, you're courting exposure, and it isn't necessary.  No one in my family has read anything I've written.  I really don't need their approval in this particular area of my life.  I'm not about to give them any ammunition for the next time they're mad at me!

Well, that's all I can come up with for now.  If I think of any more tips, I'll be sure to post them.
 

 

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Great tips - and I realize that I am not the person these tips were meant for - however, they eerily remind me of tips of staying in the closet. *Shivers* Is there still that much fear? *sigh* I wish more people could be open minded. I do completely get not letting people in non on-line life read your fan fiction if there not into it. The others just make me sad.

- Out for at least 6 years
RJ

Dear RJ,

I'm sad that you've been made to feel sad by something that I've written. I commend you for being out. I'm sure it was a huge personal decision for you and it took courage and strength for you to be able to tell your secret to the people in your life and then live that way.

I have made an editor's change to what I wrote earlier and have added the word "hentai". I would like to make it clear that my reticence to have people know what I write is primarily linked to the graphically sexual nature of my reading and writing interests. I have not as yet written any hentai, but I will in the future because there are so many stories in my head that are clamouring to get out before I die.

Because of my professional and family situation, and the fact that I'm very well known in my small community, it is best if I keep the sexual side of my nature secret. It's just something that I feel I cannot and should not be open about. However, on the political issue of Gay/lesbian rights, I am open in my support. I believe in equality, tolerance, and in love, whether heterosexual or homosexual. I just don't want to have any discussions of a sexual nature about my own proclivities or interests with anyone from my family, community, or workplace. Any such discussion would also be a betrayal of my husband, who is an intensely private person, and to be fair, never signed on for any of this. My father, who is elderly and very attached to me would feel compelled to defend me, but would be so uncomfortable. I honestly couldn't bear for my father to ever read one of my sex scenes, straight or gay. He is an aspiring writer himself, and IF he wrote a sizzling sex scene, I wouldn't want to know about it either.

My plan is to keep the true nature of my writing quiet for as quiet for as long as possible, at least until I'm making money at it. That won't happen for a while. If it's a profession rather than a hobby when discovery or self-disclosure finally comes, at least my employment won't suffer, and my family members wouldn't be able to claim that I was harming/embarrassing them for nothing more than a frivolous waste of time. I wouldn't want my former clients to know though, especially the ones who have endured sexual abuse, since rape seems to be such a common theme in Yaoi. ( If I didn't understand that fully before Yaoicon, I certainly do now). I'm not at all a fan of rape. What most appeals to me about Fake is the deep love and friendship between the two main characters. And I think that there's nothing hotter than sex between two (or more!) people who deeply love each other.

So these are my limitations at this point in my life. It may not always be this way, but it has to be this way for me now. Again, I'm sorry if I caused a shadow to pass over your evening. I wish you peace and happiness now and always.

I do understand, and you didn't cause the shadow - society did. Although, some day I would love to hear your understanding of why rape is a common theme. I am like you before Yaoicon, I don't understand.

Just wanted to let you know, I understand the secrecy but still get miffed at society's norms.
Continue with the wonderful writing!!!

Thank you, I will. In fact, I was just working on the next chapter. I'll get back to you at another time ( but soon) with regards to the rape thing, because I just know that's going to be a long post and I want to have enough time to go into it properly.

I adore your icon! Ryo knows what's coming and he's just letting himself fall into it. Oh the passion.

Wow, I can't believe what an outstanding response you've given me! This is A2M4snj your fan from Michigan here across the border. Knowing me, I'll probably never get up the nerve to post a story. I guess I'm afraid of the whole porn issue. I've read literally thousands of fanfics and some have been chan, shota etc. which appeals to me less and less now that I have a 13 year old son of my own. I have no problem with adults in any fic doing whatever, as long as it's consensual. But the idea of being a published author of erotica is both exciting a terrifying. No, I'm not a priest or school teacher, just an average woman who enjoys reading and writing fic. I'd be interested to know how some other authors have handled the fear factor or should I just suck it up and either post or not post?

You know, I think that really depends on exactly WHO you wrote those fics for. Did you write them for yourself, or did you write them for the fans who close that 7th volume and go, "So that's IT? It's OVER? AAAAGGGHHH, I need more!"

If you wrote them for yourself, that's fine. I'm not judging you. But think about it.


Piping in here -- I never bothered to hide what I read or write. Like everything else in my life, when someone knows me, there's no surprises. I don't believe in hiding, and I have no shame or fear in what I write. In fact, most of my fics are handwritten first during breaks or lunch and my co-workers are looking to see what I'm up to. Even when I was in the Navy, I'd write some very graphic slash fanfic using the computer in the office on duty nights, and at the break table during other times. The guys were more fascinated than put off -- especially when they admitted if two girls got them going, then it made sense that a woman would write about two men.

Basically I'm the type that if you can't accept any part of my life, then you can't be more than just a mere acquaintance to me. You know, I am what I am, and that's all that I am. I don't believe in pretending for anyone.

I know it's not a way everyone can be, and I think it's sad that people have to fear and hide any part of their lives, especially with people who are close to them. But the question was asked about other authors, and finally decided to reply.

My interests are still hidden and have been that way ever since I got online and started writing there in 1998. My hubby knows my online nick but isn't very computer literate so I don't think he's ever thought of searching for it. He also knows FAKE is about two men who end up in a relationship but he doesn't know about the whole yaoi / shounen-ai genre and that I actively pursue anime/manga because of the man on man action.

To be honest, my hubby finding out worries me less than one of my real life friends discovering my fics. They all know that writing is a huge passion for me and that I write online, but I've always declined to give them my pen name or information about where they can read my fics. The thought terrifies the hell out of me. It may sound stupid or melodramatic, but it's like letting them see into my soul. It sounds stupid to my ears because I let plenty of other people do that every time I post online, but I can cope with that, because those people don't really know me. It's kind of like looking at a coin. Some people get to see one side and some people get to see the other, but very few get to see both.

It's one of those things that I really, really can't explain. I had no doubts at all about meeting up with Blue, but I think I could cope with that because we'd become friends through my fics and I had nothing to hide. I couldn't do it the other way round though. I have real life friends who are as crazy about anime as me, but I still couldn't let them see my fanfiction.

*shrugs*

Over the years, I've got used to the secrecy. I guess I'm just lucky because I don't really have to hide it when I'm at home (the computer's mine and mine alone!!).

Wow, that whole post could have been written by me. That sums up my situation exactly, right down to the hubby and the meeting with Blue parts. ( I was so thrilled to meet her! My darling Blue.) The only difference there is that you've been writing since 1998 and I've only been writing since March.

I've always been bothered by the fact that writing fiction requires the writer to lay herself bare before the judgement of the world. We hope for approbation and we dread contempt or indifference. And there's no other way to do it; the process demands that threads from your soul be woven throughout your work. I've always felt while reading that I could see hidden elements of the writer's personality: desires, needs, fears, sorrows. And maybe I'm wrong about some of them, but nonetheless these are still very personal and almost invasive thoughts to be having about a person one has never met. It IS quite terrifying when I imagine a co-worker or family friend reading one of my stories and then looking at me with a new kind of appraisal in his or her eyes. And what would they do with the insights they had gained? Would they use the information to harm me or would they just keep quiet? I'm not comfortable with the not-knowing. After all, I don't go out into my daily life with my defences down. I wear as much emotional armour as I need to for each situation I find myself in. By writing, I willingly strip off that armour and offer my throat. But the difference between online readers and real-life readers is that a person in Wisconsin or Nova Scotia can't make trouble for me at my job, or bring up one of my sex scenes at my family's Christmas dinner! All they can do is write me a few lines of vitriol in a nasty review, and those lines, ironically, will reveal something about them too.

So far that hasn't happened, but my turn is probably coming.

Secrets. I wish they weren't necessary, but there always seems to be some person or persons that we need to protect ourselves from.

Ah, so very eloquently put. *hugs*


Read Your Email This Morning...

Hey Sweetness,

I read your email this morning and or couse I will write more later, but right now I just wanted to say this...

*HUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGSHUGS*

Know that you I'm thinking about you and that you are in my heart.

Love You,
Blue

Took the Plunge

(Anonymous)
Hi Britt, I thank you for your kind encouragement and decided to throw my hat in the ring . The first three chapters of " Kiss " are on AFF.N . You know , at this point I don't even care if they suck . It's just a good feeling to finally stop waffling and post. I'm always happier in life when I have a project to keep me occupied, any way.

Just wish I was a better typist -- !

A2M4snj/moontatoo

Whoo-Hoo! Go you! I can't wait to read 'em. Unfortunately I'm going to have to wait until the weekend before I can contemplate doing any fun stuff like reading or writing, because life's got its foot on my neck at the moment. Wait until you start getting reviews. You'll be so glad you posted.

this makes me so sad!! i realize there must be a necessity in some people's lives for this kind of secrecy, but i can still be upset.
i guess i'm just VERY blessed that my friends in the real world are also lit geeks with similar tastes in fiction. even the ones who don't constantly read or write yaoi/shounen-ai appreciate a good plot & strong characters, no matter the content. they respect my work & reading material the way i respect their fascination with, say, futuristic sci-fi fiction -even though i personally hate it.

i think my parents even have an inkling of the genre i read & write in, & as long as i don't throw it in their face, they don't seem to have a problem with it.

at least there are online communities for those whose social circles would be less understanding. ^_^

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