When I started stripping, it took only a couple months before I had my #1 pet peeve question. When I started escorting, it took only a couple months before I had my #1 pet peeve question.
I’ve been doing this writing/publishing thing for over a year, but now that I’m regularly contacting other people and trying to “network,” I’ve realized I have a #1 pet peeve question for both men and women in this business. Didn’t think it would happen, but it did.
Strangely, all the questions are related.
Stripping: So what’s your real name?
Escorting: What turns you on?
Writing/Publishing (men): Are those pictures really you?
Writing/Publishing (women): Can I get a [free] copy?
I have to decide how to answer.
With stripping, the answer was easy. I just gave them a fake “real” name or told them that if I wanted them to know, I’d tell them, they wouldn’t have to ask. My answer depended on my mood and how many times that night I’d already been asked that question.
With escort work, I would give a vague answer, along the lines of “it depends” or “I know it when I see it.” I still can’t believe men expect me to pin down my sexuality into some sort of recipe that they can follow. I don’t work that way and I’m guessing most women don’t either. (But I can say with utter certainty that asking this question is the one guaranteed way to turn me off!)
pet peeve writing/publishing question from men
What should I say?
- 1) Yes, it’s me. (Sigh.)
- 2) Yes, it’s me. Who else the hell would it be?
- 3) Yes, it’s me. The budget is too small to hire a model.
- 4) Yes, it’s me. No, I won’t meet you for coffee.
- 5) No, I hired a model. She’ll be standing in for me at book signings and interviews as well.
- 6) No, I hired a model. I’m actually 4′ tall and weigh 400lbs. I’m mostly covered in pustules and boils and what isn’t oozing is usually undergoing some sort of allergic reaction to all the medications I’m taking for my various ailments (and various diseases).
- 7) No, I hired a model. I’m actually a very hairy man.
- 8 ) No, I hired a model. I don’t plan on doing any sort of non-virtual promotion, so I figured, what the hey? I mean, it’s a tax write-off anyway.
Keep in mind that so far, the only people to raise this question have been men. And because I have worked as an online escort (meaning my photos were important for my advertising), I know what is going through a man’s head when he asks for picture verification. This is why it’s a pet peeve question.
Please note: This is in no way a self-endorsement. I feel my appearance is very average, girl-next-door. I try to take care of myself, but that’s about all I can do without a team of Hollywood surgeons and special effects artists.
What should I say? How should I handle the question? What’s the best smart-ass response? (I know the best polite response is simply “Yes.”) Anyone think I’m off-base when I assume why the men ask this question?
pet peeve writing/publishing question from women
It occurred to me this week that the most of the people who’ve bought my book have been men (that I’m aware of) and 99% of the many people who have requested free copies have been women. It seems that women think they’re entitled to a free copy because of their gender or because they’re in the adult industry as well.
The pickup line: “This sounds so interesting. Can I have a [free] copy?”
Of course it’s interesting, you condescending #$*@ ! My goal really wasn’t to create a cure for insomnia or kill a lot of trees.
I have given out review copies to legitimate reviewers (I contacted a lot of reviewers but very few took me up on my offer) and to people who contributed to the first book in some way (I will continue with the gratitude plan). I’ve swapped books with a former client who self-published. (I think the trade was actually more in my favor because he had a four-color, coffee-table book.) I’ve submitted 2 books to BookCrossing.com, although what’s happened to those books is anyone’s guess.
I’m not against the idea of free books. But at some point, I have to make a living. The nonprofit that I talked about starting was not my book publishing company. My target audience (women) seem determined not to pay for the book.
another reason why I’m not into sending out books, gratis
Against my better judgment, I sent a copy to an organization. (I was publicly cornered into this and that’s my fault for not handling the situation better.) Not only have I not even received an e-mail saying “Thanks!” I haven’t even received a reply back to the e-mail in which I asked a non-book-related question (and confirmed their shipping address). If I’m saving you $25, plus s&h, because I was being nice and fulfilling a request, the least you can do is send a thank-you note.
I worked in the adult industry for a long time. Nothing is free and I don’t expect it to be. Why would anyone else have such a different view? Don’t they realize how offensive it is?