Don't Agonize Over it!
Almost a year ago, I joined a writers group. We meet every second Sunday to share information and the latest news on the publishing industry, discuss problems, personal experiences, plus we read and critique. I've met authors from all walks of life, each at a different level from beginners to intermediate, published and those trying to close the gap. Old and young. Male and female. I've also had the pleasure of meeting a publicist, freelancers and journalists, editors and some better-known authors. Anyway, you get the gist.
When I first joined, I was hesitant to tell everyone that I'm a published author. Soon as you do the subsequent question follows: "That's wonderful! What do you write?" We're talking the city where I live, and there are still people who shy away, giggle, or shun me when they hear the words gay erotic romance. And, no matter what, the reaction is always the same. I usually receive an awestruck look, and they say something like: "You actually write gay erotic romance? You?" It's my appearance that throws the person, at least that's what my daughter says because I don't look the part, but then, whom would be appropriate to fill the part? And what exactly would he or she look like? It's just a guess, but I think they expect to see a geek with a sleazy smile, horn-rimmed glasses, rubbing his hands eagerly, maybe a Pee Wee Herman knock-off. Whatever image the person conjured in their mind it definitely isn't me, and their surprise is evident.
Anyway, at the present, after many cheek flushing moments and a laugh or two, I'm good to go. I'm passionate about what I write, and I'll tell anyone now. I've learnt to share my stories, encourage others, and the best part...I've met some awesome people. So, don't agonize over it! Be honest. Be open. And, be proud of your talent, but most of all...be willing to tell others! :)
Happy Yaoi Hunting!