Preface to Pleasing María
What do you do when you’ve written a a novel that can not be published through the traditional publishing industry? This story doesn’t neatly fit in any category. Foremost a romance but without the stereotypical happy ending. Explicitly erotic, beyonds the bounds of what any publisher would touch. And correctly Politically Incorrect.
I’m blogging this novel with the hope of finding readers who enjoy the story, and may be interested in participating in the further writing, editing, self-publishing and marketing of the story. Your engagement in truly welcome. I am documenting this entire process on my author´s blog at GuyOrdinary.com with the idea that, if successful, the process will be useful to other writers in the writing, editing, publishing and marketing of their own fiction works.
If you are under 18 years of age, or are offended by explicit descriptions of sexual activity or violence, or by strong language, this story is not for you. The story will also offend folks with strong left- or right-wing political beliefs or strong religious beliefs. If this describes you, please exit this site now.
This novel, Pleasing María, is based on a real-life story, heavily fictionalized to protect the privacy of the characters. All names have been changed, and nick-names are used extensively. In particular, the major settings, cities and countries, have been changed. This change alone doubled the work of writing the story.
The story is written in first person by the protagonist, Guy Ordinary, and narrates his meeting and life with María, an exceptionally beautiful, sensual Guatemalan free spirit. It’s an explicitly erotic romance. Through Guy’s internal reflections, the story narrates how María compelling personality and character disrupted Guy’s philosophy, religion, politics, and sexuality, devastating his world view, and leaving him unanchored and adrift in the emerging Age of Woman.
About half of the original material was written in Spanish, and in real life, María and Guy usually spoke Spanish. Spanish is naturally more wordy than English, and sentences are often run together, separated by commas. I wanted to preserve that Spanish feel. And of course, translations always sound a little stilted. I tried to preserve those Spanish-isms in the English version.
Both English and Spanish have deficient vocabularies for sex. American English is very poor for sexual language, probably due to religious inhibitions. In particular, a value-neutral word for sexual intercourse, for copulation, doesn’t exist, especially for uni-directional action. In its sexual sense, the word ‘fuck’ can indicate a noun or a verb, and as a verb, be correct in every person: I fucked her, she fucked him, you fucked me, they fucked María, we fucked, they fucked, etc. As a noun: ‘it was a great fuck’. The Americans have made it a dirty word, but don’t provide a versatile, value-neutral word. I can’t say I copulated you, or I coitused you, or I intercoursed you or I sexed you – it sounds too strange. So I decided to stay with ‘fuck’, in a value-neutral sense, and once you get over the puritan shock, it’s quite natural. I never use fuck in the other sense of damage or screw-up: ‘I fucked up’. Spanish is a little better – the verb ‘coger’ is not as negatively charged as ‘to fuck’, but there’s no good noun for ‘a fuck’.
The recommended length for a blog post is 300-500 words. This makes sense for non-fiction, but for a fiction novel, this is ridiculous, so posts will vary greatly in length. I’ll attempt to break-up the chapters into natural or logical sections, but some of the posts may be quite long. This first draft of the novel is about 150,000 words long, so there will be lots of posts. To view the Table of Contents of the novel click here.
This is a first draft equivalent of the story. It is actually the third draft, but as I finished the 2nd pass, my characters revolted. Accusing me of dishonesty, of sanitizing the story to make it publishable, they proceeded to rewrite the manuscript as I slept – to tell the story as it really happened, as a raw, open wound. So the 3rd draft becomes the first again.
I welcome all constructive criticism and commentary of any aspect of the story, from grammar and spelling errors to coherency problems within the narrative. If you’d like to comment on any aspect of the story, use the (moderated) comments form. For all other communication with the author, send a message via the contact link at the top of the page. Please don’t spam or troll, your comments will never become visible.
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