Today’s topic comes from QSFer Theo Fenraven – “‘The Lord Won’t Mind’ by Gordon Merrick became a NYT bestseller. Think we’ll ever see that again? With so many people writing books with gay main characters, we should already have seen it. Why haven’t we? Why hasn’t one of our books gone ‘mainstream’ and hit the top ten?”
So I’m going to unpack Theo’s questions here a bit. It seems to me there are two main issues here.
The first one is writing LGBT characters into mainstream fiction – and for the purposes of this discussion, I’m going to define mainstream pretty broadly – as non romance-based fiction – I guess the better term might be literary fiction. Should we be writing more stories in literary and mainstream speculative fiction that involve LGBT characters?
The second is more on the marketing and reading side – how would/should such books be marketed, and is there a hunger for them among readers?
Theo, feel free to jump in and add your own spin!