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puzzled

Because if they really aren’t all about the M/Ms, then they sure could have fooled me.

I used to purchase books quite often from them, and I used to visit them at least once a week, but then I started noticing that they seemed to be publishing mostly male/male stuff. I am no lover of the penis to penis stuff. I don’t get the appeal as a woman. Two guys without the inclusion of at least one female is really not my thing, so I started visiting less. Nowadays, I surf by maybe once a month in the hopes that I wont see a pair of manly chests on the cover of every new release.

Jane made the same point on Twitter. She too considers them to be a mostly M/M epub, so doesn’t bother with them too much either.

Now of course I know that they do publish heterosexual romances, but I happened to surf over there on Sunday, and every single release was an M/M book. Two words: Nail and coffin.

I’m assuming that the M/M stuff sell better than the het stuff, which is why they seem to be over-egging the pudding over there, but it really does put me off visiting too often.

So, are Jane and I the only ones who consider Loose Id to be MMTastic?

133 Comments »

  • This kind of misperception has happened before in other places. When RRW launched its website, they did an interview where the president claimed one of the biggest misperceptions of their chapter was that it was just for m/m authors. Looking at their website, it was fairly easy to see why. The graphics and promo on the website itself were very m/m focussed, and there was no information posted on what subgenres their members wrote.

    I got a lot of flack when I suggested ways they could nip the misperception in the bud. Many took it as criticism of RRW, or criticism of m/m. It wasn’t at all. The misperception existed for many reasons–most of which had little to do with RRW and plenty to do with the online romance community’s enthusiastic embracing of m/m coupled with a general assumption that when people talk about LGBT online, they’re talking about m/m.

    But whether the misperception means people will say “Yay! A place just for m/m!” or “Oh, crap, looks like it’s only for m/m,” the results are eventually going to be the same. More m/m authors join, and authors of other subgenres of LGBT might not be bothered because they wouldn’t know if their needs would be served. RRW could easily have evolved into a m/m organization. That’s fine if it was what they wanted to do. But if it wasn’t, they needed to be aware of the misperception, the reasons it existed, and how to change it. They did a fine job of changing their website to reflect the actual inclusiveness of their mandate, and I don’t think anyone visiting there now would think they’re m/m focussed.

    If there’s a misperception about LI–whether that misperception makes people say “Cool, LI is my go-to pub for m/m,” or “Dang, they’re so m/m focussed I don’t even bother going there anymore,” the results will eventually be the same. The m/m they sell will enjoy greater success, the m/f (and f/f and f/f/m, which they do publish, yay!) will suffer, and they may end up being a m/m-focussed pub just because that’s the only thing that’s moving there. That’s fine if it’s what LI wants. But if it isn’t, they need to look at ways to dispel the misperception–and they can’t do that unless they know the misperception exists, and why.

    Which is probably why Treva didn’t come in here with her back up, to upbraid Karen and others who have shared their perceptions that LI is becoming more m/m-focussed. She’s a businesswoman, and she’d rather understand why the misperception exists and find ways to dispel it than simply tell people to “do their own research”. The whole point of selling a product means doing everything possible to put that product in front of the right eyes and making it easy for people to find what they want. It’s easier to tell people they’re wrong–especially when they are–but it doesn’t necessarily solve anything.

    :)

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  • Anon76
    July 3
    5:46 pm

    I’m going to give kudos to Treva Harte for her posts here. She did not come in here with guns-a-blazing, but rather with an obvious interest in any misconceptions that have arisen about her company. And also to ask, in a very gracious manner, about anything else that might strike a nerve with readers, be it the site or whatever.

    I don’t know her, but again, huge kudos on that.

    That being said, I’m with Karen on the perception thing. After reading promos of the upcoming books for months and months on end now, I feel the same way. And if that is not the purpose of the company, then it in no way damages them to have this discussion. Nor does it damage them if it IS the direction they are heading.

    Obviously mainly M/M is not the tack they are taking, as Treva has pointed out, and I’m sure the info being gleaned here is invaluable to the company.

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  • Pearl Crosby
    July 3
    6:30 pm

    Karen, Karen, Karen…I would never, ever mistake this blog for a Benneton promotional ad. You give yourself too much credit love. Like your calling yourself a legitimate reviewer.

    By the way, you are a class act for cutting down the authors I recommended. Did you think I was one of them?

    I wish I were because I would tell you that despite your attempt to trash my work, I will sleep well tonight. You know why? Any review good or bad helps to sell the product…ask the producers of Transformer’s II:)

    But I’m sure they will not see your comments because I’m sure 97% of them never heard of you. I didn’t until 10 hours ago. Go ahead and check my ISP address, you won’t find it in your SEO before yesterday and just between us, you won’t find it again after today either. I find a greater DIVERSITY of reviews, not meant to just solicit headlines and hits, on Romance Junkies, Mrs. Giggles, and Just Erotic Reviews.

    Since you were curious, I purchased my first Loose-Id book the summer of 2005….I would tell you the book, but I fear you would rag on the author thinking I was them.

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  • Like your calling yourself a legitimate reviewer.

    Funny, I don’t see where I’ve labelled myself “a legitimate reviewer” anywhere on this blog. I’ll tell you what, you find where it says such a thing, and I’ll take back every bad thing I’m going to say to you.

    By the way, you are a class act for cutting down the authors I recommended. Did you think I was one of them?

    Erm, no I really didn’t think you were one of those authors. I didn’t assume you were an author at all in fact. As for cutting down the authors, I’m pretty sure I didn’t do that. But you seem to be mentally challenged so I’ll excuse you for your inability to compute what you read.

    You know why? Any review good or bad helps to sell the product…ask the producers of Transformer’s II:)

    That’s not exactly true sweetie. Some reviews help sell a product, some don’t. It all depends on the review, and on the venue. You’ve been around since 2005, and you don’t seem to know a whole lot. The argument that you’re currently making is as old as the hills round here. Keep pretending you have a clue about what you’re talking about though, I find it amusing.

    But I’m sure they will not see your comments because I’m sure 97% of them never heard of you.

    Hmmm… yeah… You are precious Pearl.

    Go ahead and check my ISP address, you won’t find it in your SEO before yesterday

    Pearl, I can tell you’re new to the blog. Trust me.

    and just between us, you won’t find it again after today either.

    Who are you trying to kid? You’ll be back if only to see if I responded to you. I bet it’ll just kill you to pretend that you haven’t read this.

    I find a greater DIVERSITY of reviews, not meant to just solicit headlines and hits, on Romance Junkies, Mrs. Giggles, and Just Erotic Reviews

    .

    Trot on then love, what are you still doing here?

    Since you were curious, I purchased my first Loose-Id book the summer of 2005….I would tell you the book, but I fear you would rag on the author thinking I was them.

    Trust me Pearl, I really didn’t think you were an author. You can bet on that. I was asking for a different reason, and I found your answer to be quite satisfactory. Thanks.

    OK, seeing as you wont be reading this, I can really go to town can’t I?

    Pearl, you are a fucking twat, who seemingly can’t tell her arse from her elbow. Go forth and fuck yourself rigid, you arsehole, and whilst you’re at it, remove your head from your anus, and go and buy yourself a fucking clue.

    OK, all better now.

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  • Anon76
    July 3
    8:05 pm

    Fudge……just snorted a tasty alcohol drink all over my keyboard. (And yes, it’s 4PM on a holiday weekend, so sue me for having a libation!)

    Priceless, Karen, priceless.

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  • Anon76
    July 3
    8:22 pm

    Okay, keyboard is all cleaned and the laughter has subsided.

    Pearl, seriously, Karen only tried to show you that she has read the authors you put out and give an opinion on their books she has read. You called her out, and she answered with her perception of those authors based on her sampling of their books. Why does that piss you off?

    It wasn’t a personal thing against the authors, just on the books she’s sampled.

    And I gotta tell you, if you think Karen just jumps on a bandwagon because it’s an author of color, then you soooooooo don’t get her site at all.

    And you also don’t get that there are many more topics other than just books.

    And why the hell am I defending her when she does just fine herself…Dunno. LOL

    Love her or hate her, it is what it is.

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  • Trista
    July 3
    11:27 pm

    I saw a link to this in my email and have been following it. It’s like a train wreck. You just can’t stop looking.

    First of all, I would like to say thank you, since my book, Deadly Crimson, was one of the books you lumped into the whole m/m debate. Let me make perfectly clear, it’s not m/m, but m/f/m with no m/m interaction but this debate and interest, at least I’m hoping anyway, will increase sales and traffic and turn an already 5 figure monthly royalties into an even bigger check. So kuddos to Karen for that one.

    As to her responses, though. They’re not funny or entertaining. They’re rude, classless and unbelievably white trash. Alot of people read this blog, even me on occassion. Is that really the image you want? I read that and I can clearly see in my mind some drunk out of her mind bimbo shouting trash in some backwoods bar because some other bimbo touched her man. Imagine what some professional editor might think?

    It’s a shame that apparently a lack of a resonable rebuttle escaped you and you had to resort to four letter words and name calling. My two cents on the subject. Now I suppose I’ll go back into lurkdum and wait patiently for the white trash beatdown that is sure to come.

    Knock yourself out.

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  • Trista
    July 3
    11:34 pm

    Sorry, that should read 4 figures, not 5. Got just alittle over excited…:)

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  • Barbara B.
    July 3
    11:36 pm

    “As to her responses, though. They’re not funny or entertaining. They’re rude, classless and unbelievably white trash.”

    White trash? Somehow I just KNOW Karen’s never been called white trash before!

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  • Trista
    July 3
    11:45 pm

    White trash is just a term we use, not a referrence to her color.

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  • Cindy
    July 4
    12:02 am

    I’ve been thinking on this further and what I’m feeling is that there is the seeming overbalance, as well, because so many authors are going M/m and menage. Thus that’s the majority of manuscripts that are crossing most of the e-pub’s desks so yes, that’s what we’re going to see more of. I remember a few months ago hitting a variety of sites when I had spare money and wanted to hit some e-books. My first thought was, “Ugh. There’ nothing m/f, non-paranormal, non-vampire, etc. Nothing that I like.” I have noticed even out a bit lately as well, but I have the added problem of not liking short stories as well. And some, from the blurbs I’ve read, have no real plot…they’re just so much silliness. Which is okay once in a while…I do like that from time to time.

    Additional thoughts, not necessarily pertaining to LI but e-publishing in general. Better editing is needed. Stories with more oomph to them…that I can really get into. With short stories, I feel like I’m just getting to know the characters and they’re over. Easier sites to navigate..and faster loading sites as well. More selection in manuscripts (more in the author’s hands than the e-pubs, I know. They can’t publish what isn’t submitted.

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  • First of all, I would like to say thank you, since my book, Deadly Crimson, was one of the books you lumped into the whole m/m debate.

    Way to go re finding a way to plug your book Trista. That’s wily of you. Honestly though, what are you talking about?

    I’m hoping anyway, will increase sales and traffic and turn an already 5 figure monthly royalties into an even bigger check.

    Oh I get your point, you’re trying to tell me that your books sell extremely well. Good for you, but I’m not sure how that relates to the discussion, seeing as this debate isn’t really about how much your books have earned.

    As to her responses, though. They’re not funny or entertaining. They’re rude, classless and unbelievably white trash.

    You make that sound like a bad thing Trista?

    Alot of people read this blog, even me on occassion. Is that really the image you want?

    Erm, sorry I have to laugh. Have you come on to my blog, to berate me about the image I’m portraying? Seriously Trista?

    I read that and I can clearly see in my mind some drunk out of her mind bimbo shouting trash in some backwoods bar because some other bimbo touched her man.

    You’ve obviously seen me on some of my nights out with the girls then Trista. They sure can get wild.

    Although, I must object to one thing, I wouldn’t be caught dead in a backwoods bar. I am strictly a cosmo bar type girl. More Liverpool Street, than Welshpool, if you know what I mean. And I suspect you don’t.

    Imagine what some professional editor might think?

    And I should care what a professional editor might think because…?

    It’s a shame that apparently a lack of a resonable rebuttle escaped you and you had to resort to four letter words and name calling.

    Are you accusing me of swearing Trista? Moi?

    Well how very dare you besmirch my good name. Why I have a mind to slap you across the visage with my mixed fibres lily-white glove, encrusted with faux jewels on the cuffs, for calling my impeccable manners into question. I’ve never been so insulted in my life.

    Truly.

    Now I suppose I’ll go back into lurkdum and wait patiently for the white trash beatdown that is sure to come.

    White trash beatdown?? White trash beatdown? What kind of language is this?

    White trash? Somehow I just KNOW Karen’s never been called white trash before!

    You are so right Barbara, I’ve been called many things, and I mean many things, but white trash is new to me. I should get that put on a badge I think.

    Sorry, that 5 figures should be four. Got a little over excited

    Actually, I suspect you remembered that your publisher, Treva, was keeping up with this thread, and you didn’t want to be caught in a lie.

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  • Trista
    July 4
    12:52 am

    Well, at least you read my correction before responding just like i knew you would. I wasn’t lying, I hit the wrong key, let’s make sure we get that point straight.

    Also, I wasn’t plugging my book. I was correcting an incorrect assumption. My book isn’t m/m and I don’t want people thinking it is.

    <>

    I can assure you, I know just as much about cosmo bars as I do backwoods bars. Where ever I am, I know how to act like a lady. Location doesn’t make you, your attitude and behavior does. What does your attitude and behavior say about you?

    I’m sure you’re proud of you behavior. I’m sure you’re patting yourself on the back and you’ll respond, why yes I am. Good for you.

    Just remember, what goes around comes around. I posted to correct a wrong and caution you on your behavior and responses because I see what people are posting about you.

    It’s just a shame your nose is too high in the air for you to see it. Watch out for that rain.

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  • Trista
    July 4
    12:53 am

    Well, at least you read my correction before responding just like i knew you would. I wasn’t lying, I hit the wrong key, let’s make sure we get that point straight.

    Also, I wasn’t plugging my book. I was correcting an incorrect assumption. My book isn’t m/m and I don’t want people thinking it is.

    <>

    I can assure you, I know just as much about cosmo bars as I do backwoods bars. Where ever I am, I know how to act like a lady. Location doesn’t make you, your attitude and behavior does. What does your attitude and behavior say about you?

    I’m sure you’re proud of you behavior. I’m sure you’re patting yourself on the back and you’ll respond, why yes I am. Good for you.

    Just remember, what goes around comes around. I posted to correct a wrong and caution you on your behavior and responses because I see what people are posting about you.

    It’s just a shame your nose is too high in the air for you to see it. Watch out for that rain.

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  • Emmy
    July 4
    1:16 am

    I..uh…white trash? *is keeled ded* dunno if I’d be more offended at being called ‘white’ or ‘trash’

    and is it too late to point out that it’s invariably difficult to complain about classless and trashy posts/responses whilst slinging mud yourself? tres declasse

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  • Karen Scott
    July 4
    2:12 am

    You’ve come here crying foul under false pretences Trista.

    I’m pretty sure, nobody here even mentioned your book by name until you decided to wade into the discussion, wagging your fingers, pretending to be a lady, whilst bandying about slurs like ‘white trash’ and ‘drunken bimbo’.

    I think Treva Harte is a terrific publisher, who so far has dealt with all of this with great aplomb. Fortunately for her, she can see the wood for the trees, and knows KKB well enough to know that the original post wasn’t an effort to try to tarnish Loose Id.

    Then you come along, and attempt to undo all the good she’s done.

    Let’s try this potential blog post title out for size, shall we?

    Loose Id Writer, Trista Ann Michaels Calls Reader White Trash.

    That sounds like a really good blog post, don’t you think? And just think of all the books that such a post would help you sell. I bet you just can’t wait.

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  • Donna
    July 4
    4:05 am

    Let me make perfectly clear, it’s not m/m, but m/f/m with no m/m interaction

    This always makes me a little sad when I see it, because I don’t understand. I get having two straight guys hook up with some chick for a night or a fling, but for the supposed HEA required for romance? I don’t get it. I want everyone in a relationship to love everyone else. That’s the only way I can see that HEA working out.

    And yet it seems to be de rigeur with m/f/m to insist, “Oh, but there’s none of that gay shit going on. Not in here, no way.” Why? In my perception, if you’re in bed with someone and there’s fucking going on, you’re sexually involved with that person. Having a chick between your dicks doesn’t negate that.

    Anyway, my point is that some people–myself included–are not going to default to seeing m/f/m menage as het. To some people, it inherently includes m/m content, even if there’s no touchies.

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  • Mireya
    July 4
    1:35 pm

    Can someone please get rid of the spammer… yech… and yes, THAT last comment before mine is spam. (Feel free to delete mine as well, if you decide to clean that out)

    Sorry, I am very peevish about spam.

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  • Lori
    July 4
    2:56 pm

    I thought on July 4th all the fireworks would be in the sky and then I came here!!

    I have laughed my ass off this morning. Karen being called white trash had to be the most sublime moment ever. I still have tears in my eyes from laughing.

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  • md
    July 4
    4:54 pm

    Trista, maybe you’re winning a reader or two this way, but you’re losing as many. I don’t buy books from writers who come across as overbearing, arrogant, and unduly vicious. And spelling that’s bad even for a blog post doesn’t help your cause.

    And unless your m/f/m is just simply a traditional triangle that ends with m/f HEA, at the very least the homoerotic undertones will be there–and hey, I think that’s a plus, anyway. If you’re truly writing threesomes, you shouldn’t be afraid to explore any feelings that may arise between the men, whether they carry it through or not. Your story won’t be believable, otherwise (at least to me).

    But seriously–do think twice before posting any more ugly tirades or the whole nail-coffin thing could be applied to you as well.

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  • I don’t care for M/M but I like Loose-Id. For me, people can read whatever they want and call it Romance however and whenever they feel the word fits. This world is big enough for different tastes.

    Hey, Treva, my wife and I love the BDSM!

    BTW, Trista -a very interesting description of Karen there. Thanks to it, from here on I’ll be thinking of you every time I hear the term white trash.

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  • Anon76
    July 4
    5:54 pm

    White trash? Wowsa. Karen, you def need a button bearing that.

    I suppose, Trista, that you didn’t want to step over some line by calling Karen “ghetto”. Snicker. That little ploy was not lost on me.

    As I’m not feeling real generous in nature now, I’m going to be blunt and ask, Trista, that you use the word you want to use and get it over with.

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  • Oh, puh-leeze

    Karen, why bother to hide your dislike of m/m relationships by burying it under the guise of critisizing a publisher for daring to publish m/m erotic romance? Why not just state your real agenda which is to air your grievances against those who don’t follow your narrow minded view of the world which is that romantic/sexual relationships should consist of nothing more than one man and one woman.

    That’s one of the most trite arguments, period.

    I don’t read M/M. I also don’t read westerns.

    They don’t appeal to me. If not liking M/M makes one a homophobe, does it follow that not liking westerns means I hate cows and horses and cowboys?

    No. It just means they don’t appeal to me.

    I do prefer heterosexual romance, because I want the male and female interaction.

    Not liking M/M doesn’t make one a homophobe. Preaching hate, advocating violence, that is the sort of thing that makes one a homophobe.

    Man, the drama online anymore.

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  • What I support politically, societally, etc. is not necessarily what gives me the tinglies. As it happens, I support LGBT and like MM and FF, but not liking them **as configurations in romance or erotica** would not make me a ‘phobe. I’m also a staunch Democrat, but rarely does Ted Kennedy show up in my fantasy life. :)

    Wouldn’t the better thing be to ask someone where they stand rather than to attribute prejudice or a sinister motive?

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  • Has
    July 4
    10:11 pm

    WOW – I agree with Karen and the others said about preferences- although I have enjoyed the odd m/m book. I usually prefer menage stories, but I am mainly an Het focused reader. Does this mean I am homophobic too?

    Trista’s attack on Karen is beyond tasteless, and to me as a reader I won’t pick up a her book of hers as I think this was a cheap dig to plug her book. If she thinks she can sell lots of copies of her books, then good luck. But to attack a reader for stating the perceptions of publishers is just stupid, and inane.

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  • I thought I might add to the conversation because I write for Samhain Publishing and Loose Id.

    As someone said, Loose Id seems to “push the envelope”. Since I also write for category, it was very freeing for me to really let my hair down with my Loose Id book. When I explored their site prior to submitting, I was thrilled at the variety I found.

    *But that also applies to Samhain Publishing.*

    The most wonderful thing about dipping your toes into the pool of e-publishing is the out-of-the-box opportunities. That translates m/m to some. M/m/f to others. M/f/m or BDSM to someone else.

    For me, at Samhain, it translated into finding a home for a vampire romance where the heroine had the fangs and lusted after her wicked Maker who was not her meant-to-be. For me, at Loose Id, it translated into finding a home for a non-traditional werewolf romance that was more American Werewolf in London than Dances with Wolves. It wasn’t about the pairings. It was about the story. At both publishers.

    As Angela pointed out, you can’t argue with someone’s perceptions. As Treva pointed out, listening to what others perceive is good business practise.

    I have to admit as a working writer trying to make a living I’ve noticed how well m/m’s seem to be selling…everywhere!

    Thanks for the discussion, Karen.

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  • LOL @ Karen! No likey my vampires huh? And to think I was going to name my next vampire heroine Karen. :-)~

    I’m a fan of m/m and know I can usually find a good m/m story at Loose id because it does seem like they release a lot of them. That’s not really a bad thing for me though. 😀

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  • Trace
    July 5
    2:21 pm

    Thank you for having this discussion, Karen. Can you please list the names of the authors here who have insulted and/or called readers homophobic, perhaps in a separate post?
    They will be removed from my list and I will never buy from them, even if they publish books that might interest me.

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  • Melissa Conatser
    July 6
    4:48 am

    Wow! I just stumbled upon this blog while looking at someone else’s that had this blog in their blog roll. I am amazed at all the nastiness that has come from one post. Anyway, Karen, I think that we are all entitled to our opinions and perceptions. I am going to start checking your blog regularly!

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  • vein
    July 6
    5:51 pm

    Selective misquote 😉 : “Treva, my wife and I love the BDSM”

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  • sallahdog
    July 7
    1:45 pm

    You give yourself too much credit love. Like your calling yourself a legitimate reviewer…

    Many loved the white trash comment, but this was my personal favorite… Karen can call herself a lot of things, but she has never called herself a reviewer, legitimate or not… Lazy reviewer? yeah… I think she would cop to that…

    btw folks, just because someones taste in books doesn’t match up with yours, doesn’t make them wrong… I think the only author both Karen and I agree on Dorothy Koomson (we both think she is terrific)…(oh, and we also agreed on an old Linda Howard assholic hero should have had painful things done to him)… Other than that, her tastes and mine don’t match up much… which is ok… I never read this blog for its rich intellectual discourse over books…

    I admit it… I come for the twat speak… and arses.. I love it when Karen has arse talk…

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  • You know, I was a little taken aback by all the negativity in response to this post. Why I was surprised, I don’t know. Because it’s all too easy to misread intentions in the written word, where tone is often absent. For my part, I was curious as to why a lot of people think Loose Id is primarily a m/m publisher. I write for them as well, mostly m/f or menage with m/m elements. Unlike Karen, I find m/m romances enjoyable. To me, as long as the romance is the central point to the story and there’s a happy ending, I don’t much care who the main characters are. But hey, to each her own. I will say that when I think of Loose Id, I think of well-written erotic romances that push sexual boundaries. My raciest stuff is there, and I love the fact that I’m encouraged to write a great romance about any/all type of characters, regardless of gender, race, species (long as they’re humanoid). *grin*
    Thanks for the great topic. Really interesting viewpoints, Karen. And the percentages of vagina to penis in several posts had me laughing out loud.

    Marie :)

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  • […] when Karen posted on her blog about Loose Id and M/M and perceptions my immediate thought was “Man, I have lots of eBooks in the Teddypig eBook […]


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