When you're paid to do something you're a professional.
When you do it for fun you're an amateur.
When you're paid to do something that you'd do for fun anyway, isn't that the best of both worlds?
Well, unless you're a hooker.
The last couple of weeks I got involved in a project that looked like a good money making opportunity for me. It was something that came naturally to me and that I do well. The only problem that I encountered was perception. Other people's perception.
What the project consisted of was writing custom gentle erotica for couples in love to buy as gifts for one another.
I launched a website using a pseudonym and put some of my written samples up for people to get an idea of what they could purchase.
I IMMEDIATELY got solicited for sex.
The first guy was from Japan. The second guy was from Michigan. The third guy couldn't spell well enough for me to get past the first line of his email. I learned a hard lesson about myself that day….that even with a possible order on the line; I'm still a snob when it comes to literacy.
Part of the problem was the traffic that the name of the site engendered.
I was going for the young couples in love/newlywed kind of crowd, but what I got was the creepy guy who still lives in his parent's basement kind of crowd. I thought that naming it Erotica feeds the soul would set the tone from the get go.
The good news is, I ended up submitting an edited version of one of my poems from that website to an online poetry journal and it has been accepted for publication. I'm publishing it under my real name and am pretty pleased about it being published.
I'll provide a link to the poetry journal later this week when I know when the poem will be published.
The further good news is that the ick factor that came up with the perception of erotica as PORN and my alter ego as a hooker didn't tarnish my soul and I let all the creepiness float away out into the ether as soon as I deleted the website.
Thanks to everybody who was with me throughout this whole thing and heard about the ups and downs already.
You know who you are and I thank you for a) supporting me wholeheartedly and b) not living in your parent's basement.