Shower Scenes

by Barbara Ann Wright

One day in the shower, I decided I wanted to write a lesbian fantasy romance. This didn’t have anything to do with the act of showering; it’s just that I get my best ideas in the bathroom. I’m not sure whether shampoo is my muse or if the mundane nature of the activity gives me room to think. It might have something to do with the creativity constriction imposed on me by clothing…

Okay, getting out of the shower now.

Lesbian fantasy romance! I’d tinkered with LGBT characters before. They’d popped up time and again, but even if they were main characters, their romantic endeavors were brushed to the side. Not this time, though. For my lesbian fantasy romance, they’d be front and center, shoulders forward, facing the world. I just had to write it, and in writing it, I had to face the reason why I’d always put my LGBT babies in the corner.

If I wrote lesbian romance like I wanted to write it, I was scared that my friends and family would know I was bi. Even now, that sentence is still hard to write.

It had never come up before. I’m married to a man; there was no reason to discuss my sexual orientation. Why talk about it at all?

Because there are people who are afraid to speak, who don’t feel that they can, or who know they won’t be loved if they do. Those of us who will be loved have to speak for them. I wanted to write for them. I wanted to give them out and proud lesbians who have adventures, who fight evil, and whose love is bright for all to see.

I got some odd looks from those who know me. Even now, when I give people the synopsis of my forthcoming book, The Pyramid Waltz, they look at me quizzically, at the ring on my finger. I smile at them, even after they say, “So…,” and leave a question hanging in the air. I delight in watching people try to figure out what exactly they want to ask.

A few have asked, “Why lesbians?” to which I laugh and say, “Why not?” When the very confused ask, “Couldn’t you just change one to a man?” I giggle uncontrollably and picture one of my two female leads with a penis. I don’t think it’s just that easy to change, man. After my giggle fit is over, I like to lean in close and say, “Tell you what. I’ll write you a story where they’re both men. Better?”

45 Responses to “Shower Scenes”

  1. 1 Joan June 26, 2012 at 8:37 AM

    Thanks, I needed that this morning


  2. 3 SA June 26, 2012 at 9:39 AM

    “front and center, shoulders forward, facing the world” – a wonderful approach for any LGBT character. The story looks interesting; congrats on your book’s upcoming release!


  3. 5 jfaraday June 26, 2012 at 10:41 AM

    Thank you. You speak for a lot of us. I can’t wait to read your book. It sounds brilliant.


  4. 7 Mel June 26, 2012 at 11:04 AM

    I hear you.

    Bi the way;-), I write mostly boy meets boy and trust me, people get real “weirded” it out by that. Let’s face it, many straight people are still very much unaware of queer fiction and who writes it….It’s hard in the beginning, especially if you’re not out as bi with friends and family, which was my case. But it gets much easier with time, you’ll see. However, what I write forced me to eventually be honest with myself and the most closed-minded people in my entourage. There comes a time when you can’t ignore their questions anymore.
    “Why are you doing a reading during the Pride festival?”
    “Why do you say you’re part of this or this organization?”
    “Why is you publisher a LGBTQ Publisher?”

    ‘CAUSE I’M BISEXUAL. Capital B.


    Congratulations on your book. It’s going on my tbr list this summer!


    • 8 barbaraannwright June 26, 2012 at 11:11 AM

      Thanks, Mel. I know there are weird looks all around when it comes to having LGBT pride or embracing LGBT writing. It’s sad, really. Ultimately, it wouldn’t matter if we were straight. Straight people can support LGBT rights, too. I’m glad we both stepped up about our own sexuality, though. No one should live in the dark. ^_^


      • 9 Terri Bruce June 26, 2012 at 12:58 PM

        LOL, I was just about to say this! If we’re writers, shouldn’t we be able to empathize with and portray “the other” no matter in what way it’s different from us (race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, planet of origin)? This should also be true for readers, too, right? Don’t we read to be transported, to experience “the other which is not ourselves” and such?

        Great post!


  5. 10 Morgayne June 26, 2012 at 11:42 AM



  6. 12 Joanne June 26, 2012 at 1:21 PM

    Congrats on the book Barbara Ann and thank you for your courage. I have a few bi friends who have gone through the same thing and I know it was probably really hard for you to do.


  7. 13 Cathy Pegau June 26, 2012 at 1:32 PM

    Excellent post! I had the same revelation/reaction when I was writing mine. Coming up with a match for my heroine, another woman popped into my head. All righty. That worked perfectly on a lot of levels. Then more than a few family members and friends were like, “Oh, um…okay. So, you’re writing about two WOMEN?” Yes. Yes I am! And did. And will again : )

    Looking forward to reading The Pyramid Waltz!


  8. 17 Daniel Woods June 26, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    “[I wonder if] the mundane nature of the activity gives me room to think” – perhaps you’re occupying your basal ganglia with a routine task, freeing your prefrontal cortex to work quietly in the background? 10 cool points to you if you get the reference :p.


    You know, you are much braver about the sexual orientation “issue” than I am. I’m an out and proud gay guy in real life, but in my writing, I daren’t go near the subect – I’m too afraid of the ‘gay fic’ stigma. Would I like to have two of my male leads fall madly in love with each other, preferably on the eve of battle somewhere? (You know the scenario: tunics and breeches conspicuously absent, perfectly dishevelled hair glistening in the starlight after a dip in the nearby river; “he moves in closer, blushing, and reaches for his companion’s sword…”) Obviously I would. But to some, doing so would transform my story into a ‘gay piece’. Not a ‘piece that has gay characters’, but a militant, didactic piece of pro-LGBT propaganda that obviously serves no purpose other than to push my big gay agenda. Glassy-eyed readers turn away in droves; book is relegated to ‘specialist erotica’ section; time stops, world ends, sales plummet. Where did I go wrong? I didn’t realise I was writing something so subversive…

    It makes me sad that the stigma exists at all, but sadder still that I’ve in some way subscribed to it, particularly when I happen to really enjoy gay fiction. So good on you for facing this head on, no nonsense, and thanks for a very honest blog post!


    • 18 barbaraannwright June 26, 2012 at 9:42 PM

      I had that quote narrowed down to three shows, and Big Bang was one, so can I have SOME of the cool points? ^_^

      I’m saddened by that stigma, too, but I’ve decided not to care. And if I see any LGBT-fic languishing in the Gay and Lesbian Studies bookshelf (just the one), I always re-shelve them appropriately.

      I say, if you want to write that story, write it. You’ll be surprised with how many people want to read it, how many people are desperate for stories with gay characters, and they’ll find your fiction no matter where it is.


  9. 19 Anita Bradshaw June 26, 2012 at 3:08 PM

    Looking forward to the book coming out, Barbara! Congrats!


  10. 22 Erin Saluta June 26, 2012 at 3:09 PM

    Thanks for the insight into the lesfic world from the bi perspective. I really just like a great book and one that is lesbian fantasy romance sounds spectacular! Plus I totally related to the shower epiphanies.


  11. 24 Daniel Woods June 26, 2012 at 3:32 PM

    Also (and most importantly), congrats again on the book! Must feel awesome :D.


  12. 26 franchescah June 26, 2012 at 3:46 PM

    You need to write what is in your being to get out “front and center”. Be all you can be love. 🙂


  13. 28 bookgeek June 26, 2012 at 4:40 PM

    great blog! I look forward to a lesbian fantasy/romance.


  14. 30 Maureen June 26, 2012 at 6:08 PM

    I just read the synopsis of The Pyramid Waltz , it sounds great. The only disappointment is that I have to wait until September for it to be released! 😉


  15. 32 Kim June 26, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    Barbara Ann thanks for the blog and I look forward to reading your book.


  16. 34 Angela Brown June 26, 2012 at 9:34 PM

    I’m just waiting to read the book! Woot! Call me a reader without a care about anything but a really good story, because for real, THAT is what I want…a wonderful story I can lose myself in. BB/GG/Whatever, just make me swoon.

    Yeah…all about the story.


  17. 36 Sheri Campbell June 26, 2012 at 10:08 PM

    Enjoyed your blog and have written The Pyramid Waltz on my September to do list. Congratulations on your new novel.


  18. 38 Elaine Hardman June 27, 2012 at 1:30 AM

    Very nice blog, enjoyed it!


  1. 1 IWW: The blog before the blog! « Barbara Ann Wright Trackback on June 26, 2012 at 11:00 AM
  2. 2 Link Round Up: June 19-26 « The Lesbrary Trackback on June 27, 2012 at 11:57 AM
  3. 3 IWW: Holy shit, it’s a romance « Barbara Ann Wright Trackback on June 27, 2012 at 1:52 PM
  4. 4 Blog Hop! « Barbara Ann Wright Trackback on December 19, 2012 at 12:52 PM

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