My ninety-one year old mother was excited for me when I told her that Bold Strokes Books had accepted my first novel, Edge of Awareness, for publication. She, being my greatest fan, wanted to read it immediately. I told her that it had to go through an editing process, and it would be a few months before it was printed. It didn’t matter to her. She wanted to read it now.
My mom loves romance novels. She’s probably read every Harlequin romance ever printed. Edge of Awareness is a romance. A lesbian romance. I wasn’t too worried that she wouldn’t like my romance novel, but as I said, it’s a lesbian romance; with a lesbian sex scene.
So, I revised the manuscript and saved it as the “Mom version.” Out came the sex scene and an extensive word search removed a number of four letter words, especially the one beginning with f. Then I signed it, gave it to her to read, and waited.
She liked it. She told me that I “had a good imagination.”
In August 2014, I inscribed a paperback copy of my published novel for my mother, gave it to her, and waited.
She loved it. She complimented me again on my imagination and then told me that she was happy to learn what two lesbians did together. She also divulged her amazement that “they had the same feelings as a man and woman together.”
I wonder if other authors of lesbian romance create a “mom version” of their work. I’m happy to report that I never will again. I suppose she could have said she liked the story, or the characters, but her last statement will bring tears of joy to my eyes every time I think of it.