It seems that Circlet Press had decided to eschew its role as erotica publisher and gone into the comedy business. I found this out through Catherine Leary’s blogpost ‘Really, Circlet? REALLY?‘
I actually had to click on the links to confirm it with my own eyes, because I just couldn’t believe any organization that considered itself a legitimate publisher could do this. But it’s true. Circlet Press have established a twitter feed and they are tweeting excerpts of stories from their slush pile.
We write in a very beleaguered genre. This last September saw the first – THE FIRST – ever convention for erotica writers. We get accused of being synonymous with pornography. We get banned. We labour under ridiculous publisher guidelines that bully writers into self-censorship. Many readers who would happily sit down with a Philip Roth novel won’t touch our genre because they believe all erotica badly written, unskilled crap. Good writers who might bring incredible wealth to our genre won’t do it for fear of having their work labeled as erotica. A huge portion of what is labeled as erotica is nothing more than formulaic romance novels with the sex added.
And now, one of the very few print publishing houses that does publish within the genre has decided that what it does is comedy. It’s using the public humiliation of writers as a marketing tactic. God, where were their ethical standards when someone made this decision?
And how deeply hypocritical that your publishing guidelines exclude rape (although 57% of women have erotic rape fantasies) but you seem to have no problem publicly gang-banging a writer for having the temerity to submit something to you that you don’t like.
I despair. I honestly do. I look at a stunt like this and I think…what the fuck am I doing? What am I doing in a genre where one of its major publishers can’t even take itself seriously enough to act professionally? How the hell will I ever get taken seriously as a writer with shit like this going on? I am so angry.
You, Circlet Press, are a bunch of assholes. Your stupid, unethical, sadistic behaviour has put another nail in the coffin of the genre I love. You have damaged the integrity of my work and my identity as an erotica writer. I fucking hope you NEVER get another good submission. I hope you drown in your slush pile of crap.
I need a vodka. Now.