Am I the only person who’s tired of settling down to watch evening TV and being faced with ads naddering on about erectile disfunction? Take this, take that--when the moment is right. Until then, sit in two bathtubs and look at the ocean. But, and this is a big but, if you have an erection lasting more than four hours, call your physician. Four hours! I guess I’ve led a sheltered life.
My point being, is nothing sacred? Sex with the partner of your choice is glorious, but do we have to hear about sexual malfunction over our nightly ice cream (sometimes with a brownie)?
The tampon ads aren’t too much fun either. Laxative ads are on that list, also. Diet pills are a little better, except when I’m polishing off the ice cream. Give me a good lite beer ad any time, maybe with a studly athlete touting the brew. I love hearing about all those hops.
Maybe my antipathy for life’s grungier moments shows in my writing. Now don’t get me wrong. My murder mysteries (the Murders by Design Mystery Series, thank you very much) have shooting scenes--people get plugged right between the eyes--chase scenes, muggings, fights In a story I’m currently revising, there’s a harrowing birth scene, a poisoning, a stabbing, so I’m not avoiding the dark side of existence. Not at all. But those dark scenes are dynamic, life-changing events that are important to the plot. In them, my heroes are always ready to perform, there are no scatological references (well, only one ladies room stalking scene in Rooms To Die For), nobody’s constantly constipated, or ever for that matter, and the heroine never has her period at a critical point in the plot.
Why not, you ask? Because fiction imitates life only up to a point. It doesn’t duplicate every aspect of it. That theory can be opposed, of course, and there are works out there to prove it. However, in IMHO, fiction’s deepest reality is a fantasy that cherry picks its truths. Which means an author doesn’t necessarily have to emphasize what we all, on some level, would probably rather not read about. E. D. no. E. F. yes! Comments welcome.
Jean Harrington’s latest Naples-set murder mystery, Rooms To Die For, is currently available on Amazon. The next book in this tongue-in-cheek series, The Design is Murder, is due for release on November 17th. You’re cordially invited to check out excerpts at www.jeanharrington.com.