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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Hello, Iris

Vanilla Cake with Buttercream Frosting.
With fruit even better.
Iris Kettles’ affinity for sugar knows no bounds.
 Couple that fork with a good read and she ’s content.
And when her life is turned upside down, she discovers a whole new addiction in her submission.

I’ll be honest, I didn’t like Iris at first. Even though, I created her. Typically, when I am in write-mode, the story develops first and then the characters come to the party. Iris was too quiet. I certainly wouldn’t want to sit by her, she’s no fun, so why would you dear reader?

The girl who gets intimidated by everyone and delves into books and food so she doesn’t have to get to know herself. The untypical main character, a pudgy-little half-breed academic. So not the character erotic writing typically has. So why would I want to get to know her? Isn’t me Kailee getting to know her just asking for the bad jokes to come rolling in? Who writes erotica with a girl like Iris leading the novel?

So we, she and I, are up at all hours. Arguing. About what her story is and isn’t. And then she kindly informs me that she isn’t done. I look at her as she’s eating her chocolate mousse and ask, “What did you say?”

And then it hit me what she was telling me. And what I was reading in countless forums. You beautiful readers fall in love with characters. You want their ups and downs, highs and lows. Heart-breaking and falling. And then I thought about myself and the books that truly resonated with me, I was left wanting more of the characters.

I questioned my motives. I did. I fought with myself over Iris. Her addictions, her hips, her heritage, her everything. We fought and we fought hard. Then Iris told me something. It’s more than erotica. And me being me, I argued with her some more. And I’m still not sure it’s erotica, but we’ll go with it for argument sake. Perhaps even better, we’ll go with epic erotica. Or, epirotica.

I gave Iris a chance. Typically, this was the kind of character that I would have just cut. She would have hit the delete button, the shredder, and been long gone and forgotten. But there was something about her that just seemed so sincere, so kind, the girl you don’t think you want on your team, but you really do. So I took a step back, got to know her, and kept writing. I figured either she’d work her way out of my head or end up dead. Just being honest.

Writers play with characters the way children do dolls. Sometimes they have tea parties, sometimes they fight, and sometimes they rip each other’s clothes off just because we writers - as their owners - can. We like to push the boundaries, see what we can get away with. But Iris pushed me. She pushed me to keep writing her story because she believed that amongst her stories and sweet peach tea, she was valid.

Now, I honestly don’t mind her so much anymore. I’m proud to call her my friend. She’s the kind of girl you could have cake with, share your life with, and if she disagrees with you on letting her hit the shredder, she’ll tell you about it. So, Thanks, Iris, for telling me about it. For saying, “Bitch, you push that DEL key and I promise you’ll regret it.”

So I did what anyone else would have done, I took her to hell and back. And every single time, she came back stronger. I was shocked really. I figured she’d mouse out eventually. But she didn’t, she’s smart, tough, and fights for what she wants. Even to remain on the page, she fought me.

In a way, Iris changed me for the better. She shared her life with me, and now I’m giving her to you. I hope you love her as much as I do.

I’ll introduce Sal next Tuesday.
Thank you for your time.

Enjoy the ride,
Ms. Samuels



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