We interrupt National Nail Polish Day to bring you this blog...
If you know me, I had originally intended to write something light and humorous because I never take myself too seriously. But, recent events sobered me.
The grandeur and in your face quality of motion pictures is very impressionable. Visual impact on someone not mentally prepared to handle it can go askew. A prime example is youth. As a child I must have been in the living room to catch a glimpse of a scene on TV. A man was standing out in the snow in front of a ski chalet. He was throwing rocks at the upstairs window. When a woman came to the window, he shot her and there was blood in the snow. For months afterwards I would call my father to check my bedroom window at night because I swore I heard someone throwing rocks at it.
As an adult I stumbled across that movie by recognizing the very same scene that plagued me as a child. It looked extremely cheesy and the ‘blood’ in the snow ended up being a spray-painted message by the killer. The point, however, is that as a child I was not mentally prepared to handle that scene.
It is not often that a book is responsible for acts of violence, but it does happen. Steven King had to take a book out of print due to violence that was perceived to have stemmed from one of his stories.
As a writer we are responsible for preaching safe sex. What other responsibilities do we have? With the nature of romantic suspense, danger and violence are often part of the package. Granted, our audience is an intelligent, mature and beautiful group, but how far do our liberties as a writer take us? Do you ever find yourself toning down a scene because you feel it’s too graphic, or do you feel that the graphic nature makes the scene? As a reader, has the violence of a book ever lingered with you afterwards?
In romantic suspense, I like to believe that the HEA overshadows the impact of evil. But I'm a romantic. :)