I’m going to be honest: I’m really self conscious about a lot of things that go into my writing . I like to play the “I don’t give a fuck” persona while wearing my badass black hoody that makes me look like a member of The Undertaker’s cult that every teacher, counselor, coach, classmate, and even my parents fucking hated… Long story. Anyway, I like to be that badass, but I’m really not.
Seems like I really shouldn’t care at this point anyway. High school ended a long time ago, after all. The last thing I should be concerning myself with is impressing the cool kids by doing the exact same shit they’re doing. Been there, done that, and for my efforts, I learned some valuable lessons. Those lessons include, but aren’t limited to “the cool kids are dicks”, Long hair is highly over rated”, and “Slipknot fucking sucks”.
At the same time, though, I’ve found myself encountering a bit of a problem over the last few years. To put it simply, one question always seems to come up in my head: “How much detail is necessary, and how much ends up telling the reader that this author has a foot fetish?”
I suppose the obvious question going through your head immediately after hearing this question is “does this guy have a foot fetish?”. Well do I? Honestly… I have no idea. It’s one of those things where I contemplate the possibilities, and come up with no answer whatsoever. I’ve seen videos on the internet (don’t judge), and I’m still divided. Footjobs seem like something I’d have no problem with (it’s basically a handjob with your feet), but then there’s the foot worship. That… Well. I don’t know how to feel about that. I guess maybe if they were clean? And I mean sparkling clean, too. We’re talking fresh out the shower, and with a little perfume spraid on for good measure kind of clean.I think in the end, it’s something I wouldn’t go for if I were the one calling the shots, but could probably be talked into doing if it’s what she really wants. From there, who knows.
The only real foreseeable problem with that is the distinct lack of girlfriend. And trust me, that problem isn’t going to be remedied anytime soon. I won’t bore you with the rant here, because it’s a rant that leaves me all bummed out, depressed, and in the perfect mood to write another novella of Highfill, Kansas, but there are a lot of revelations that one must make when they’re impaired like I am. Unfortunately,being permanently stuck in the friendzone with every woman you’ll ever meet is one of them. Frankly, that much is already enough of a hurtle. You add on the possibility you might want to try foot stuff… Man, you won’t even see the friendzone.
Oh, and because someone’s going to suggest it, no, I’m not buying a hooker. largely because I don’t have that kind of money.
I try my best to make peace with living the life of an infinite bachelor, and dismiss that sort of experimentation as something I’ll have to wait for in another lifetime. Maybe in heaven, or nirvana, or the abha kingdom… Shit, maybe I’ll be reincarnated as another human, and get the opportunity in that lifetime. For now, though, I’m just trying to make peace with a lifetime of being single.
… Except sometimes, I feel like my desire to explore things like that tends to find its way into my fiction.
The Jade Blade Legacy is probably the biggest offender in stories I’ve actually published. I’m not sure you even want to see the unpublished stuff. Mahinder’s Grand Tournament was just a simple bet between an arrogant boy and a Jadeite with a lot more skill and humility. Pretty innocent, one would think. Except when I go back and reread that old story, I find when it gets to the scene where Huang has to pay up, I couldn’t seem to get through with writing it fast enough. It just feels… frenetic, I guess. For one or two paragraphs, it’s all “AAAH NOTHING TO SEE HERE LA LA LA!”, then the story picks up my normal pace. It’s almost like I’m trying to avoid the accusations. In The Scarlet-Ruby War, I mention that Chief-Highlord Sarah Stoneweaver is getting a pedicure before King Richard meets with her. On one hand, I wrote that in thinking that it was a really good way of showing how much wealthier the highlords were, and how dirt poor everybody else was. Also, something about how the clan Bluefinger (her clan before she was married to a Stoneweaver man) painted their nails out of tradition or something. It sounds like fascinating cultural notes. The kind of stuff fantasy geeks (myself included) absolutely eat up and build wikis with. Or it tells them that I’m a freak who likes blue pedicures the best.
I have yet to finish book 3 of Jade Blade… In fact, I really ought to get around to that. But there’s a lot of stuff getting in the way. For starters, I keep revisiting a chapter or two, wondering how much is necessary to show off the life of extravagance Sarah Stoneweaver enjoys, and how much is this the author living out a fantasy that he’ll never be able to live out in reality? Also, all my other projects have gotten in the way of that one, and the rather low sales records have motivated me to focus elsewhere, but I digress.
Gael, my current project, is many things. It’s my attempt at a superhero novel, it’s a story I’ve had in my head since June, it’s probably the most experimental thig I’ve done this side of HikikoMorey… And frankly, it’s me deciding to stop giving a fuck what you think and just running with it. The heroine needs to be in constant contact with the Earth in order for her powers to work properly; therefore, going into battle barefoot makes sense. Foot fetishism is adressed, particularly through the eyes of one of the cops. In my original blueprint, he was going to be the comedy relief character. But between a lot of the jokes having highly unrealistic set ups, and being a little annoyed with comedy relief characters at the moment (mostly because my friends want to marathon fucking Fairy Tail every time we congregate, and the Japanese… Have a very different idea of what constitutes funny sometimes), I decided to play him more seriously than I originally intended. Plus if there was ever an opportunity to live vicariously through one’s fictional characters, this is probably the closest I’ll ever get. The kink is brought up, but it’s not nearly as defining a character attribute as it was in the blueprint phase. If anything, photographic memory and a Sherlock like hyperfocus are his defining character traits right now.
But I digress.I have no answer for what constitutes the line between necessity and fetish. I just write, and hope to god it doesn’t come off perverted. And even if it does, it’s not the worst thing out there. My god, have you ever read Jaye Wells’ Sabina Kane novels? Woman can’t go one book without having sex with someone. And pretty much every single time, it’s insanely detailed and uncomfortably graphic. I’m no prude, mind you, but considering I bought these damn books for action, adventure, and badass vampire chicks beating up werewolves and fe, these sex scenes really take me out of the moment. Part of me even wonders if the author really thought this was necessary to the plot, or if she just wrote this so she could rub the nub later.
And that’s the sort of thing I think about. I’m thinking this about Jaye Wells, but suppose Jaye Wells picked up one of my Jade Blade Legacy novels, and started thinking “Dude, this guy clearly wrote about her feet so he could play tuggawar with cyclopse later on.” Self consciousness is my curse. It was yelled into me many years ago, and it sticks with me all the way into my thirties. I suppose it’s not the worst thing that could be yelled into me, but then I start reading fucking Jaye Wells, and think “Oh come the fuck on, dad! SHE gets to write about vampires fucking elves and gets a five-figure income a year (probably, so why can’t I?” Though in all honesty, my attempts at erotica were clearly written by a seventeen-year-old virgin who’s only knowledge of sex came from other people’s fan fiction, so maybe it was a good thing I remembered those lectures? Shit, I don’t even know anymore. I’m rambling at this point anyway.
I guess the only thing left to do is just walk the line, and hope it doesn’t lead off a cliff or something.