As you may or may not have noticed after reading some of the articles posted on this website, I’m gay. I’m actually quite the lesbian, which is depressing considering how rural the area I live in is. Say what you will about cities, but at least there are gay people there. In my town, there’s a gay population of one. It gets rather depressing sometimes.
This isn’t to say that I don’t know any gay people. I started attending a local gay support group an hour’s drive away, and I’m going to the gay pride parade in Yakima this Saturday. I’m trying to establish myself in a community so that I’m not the only homosexual in my universe, and this connection does help.
Even so, I’d like to just say how much I hate gay novels. Well, that’s not entirely true. Gay novels are improving rapidly, and just a few weeks ago I read several regency romances by Cat Sebastian that were delightful. They were sweet, well written, funny, and the romance was rather believable. But they also involved two dudes. I found it sweet, but the sex scenes were just awkward for me to read…what can I say? I’m a lesbian. Two guys together just don’t inspire much lust in me. For some reason.
Discovering these books, however, did inspire me to seek out lesbian romances. This happens to me about once a year. I just get so tired of all the heterosexual novels out there that I decide to go out and buy a slew of lesbian novels and binge read them. Every year, I hope that they’ll improve. Every year, I hope that lesbian novels will no longer suck. And my hopes keep on getting dashed.
It’s not just the typos. It’s not just the lack of plot. It’s really that the romances themselves aren’t believable. I recently finished reading about ten lesbian novels that I found on amazon, and they mostly straight-up sucked. The heroines sure like to contemplate and talk a lot about their attraction to each other, but it’s amazing how rarely the authors even include dialogue. When the characters do talk to one another, it conversations sound clunky and awkward. There’s absolutely no chemistry at all. In short, the romances aren’t credible.
I’m not sure why lesbians keep writing novels where the two main characters seem more afraid of each other when they’re talking and all idealistic about each other when they’re not, but we really do need to up our game. We are clearly leaps and bounds behind gay men in this area, and we need to improve. There’s no reason why two girls couldn’t end up together in a regency romance, too.
I have read a few good lesbian novels, don’t get me wrong, but they’re few and far between. Sara Waters is usually pretty good (although don’t read Affinity, as it’s just depressing), and Red Falcon’s District by Leilani Beck is pretty good, but these are the rare exceptions. Not the rule.
Women are supposed to be the queens of writing romance. We really need to remember that and write good stories for our much neglected lesbian audience. We’ve suffered enough.