Thursday, March 17, 2011

Guest Blogger Kei-chan

Welcome my friend Kei-chan today - she's going to talk to us about why she likes m/m fiction!  Draw up a chair, Kei, so nice to have you here!  I'll get some tea, you go ahead.

A few men have asked me why I like m/m fiction.  About half of these men were open minded straight men and the rest were gay men.  Both groups seemed surprised to think that women would be interested in this genre.  I really couldn't say which group was more surprised.  I briefly contemplated the old tried and true, "Who wants a hot guy and some chick when you can have two hot guys."  Trite but true; however, there is so much more to it than that.

Someone put forward the hypothesis that just like straight men watch "lesbian" porn, straight women like gay porn.  But that is another poorly thought out claim and just doesn't ring true on so many levels.  Comparing apples to oranges doesn't do justice to the topic.

M/m romance isn't porn.  It may be very erotic and have a minimal storyline, but porn is different.  Porn is strictly sex with very little pretensions of being anything else.  It has no real redeeming qualities and frequently is between partners that aren't really interested in each other, much less turned on about the sex itself.  Even in PWP (Plot, what plot?) m/m erotica, the partners are at least enthusiastic about the roles they are playing.

Men who watch lesbian porn are saying to themselves that they want a piece of that and if those girls were with them, they would make them straight.  How do I know?  I've hung out with more men than women and have firsthand knowledge of these conversations.  These same men would never consider reading a lesbian romance.  The only lesbian action they read about is in Penthouse Forums, stories written by men for men.

I read m/m romances, m/m erotica, yaoi/shonen ai and slash.  It ranges from very graphic to a sweet kiss at the end of the story.  I'm not reading it because I want the fantasy of taking part in the action.  I read it because I like real men who are confused, vulnerable and looking for something important.  There is a depth to these characters that is missing in conventional romance, where the men are the strong silent type.  Not my kind of man.

Unlike traditional romances where they only question is how do we get the two destined lovers together, in m/m romance getting the lovers together is only half of the problem.  They may be in love, but still have multiple obstacles to overcome.  Will one or both of the lovers be able to face their feeling head on?  Will they find themselves in a situation where they won't be able to be true to themselves much less each other?  Will they have their Happily Ever After (HEA) or will they, and the reader, have to settle for Happy For Now (HFN)?

I also write m/m erotica and some slash.  I tend to be very graphic in my stories and write the kind of thing that I would like to read.  I try to make the men in my stories men and not some masculine version of the mainstream romance heroine.  Besides horny men are more fun!

A little about Kei-chan:  Kei-chan started her career helping a friend edit her slash. Since then I have branched out into writing my own slash and then later some original works. I am an avid reader and now focus almost exclusively on yaoi, slash and m/m romance. Look for me on and Facebook.


  1. Kei, I, too, appreciate the unconventional romance and see how an author can explore those issues and pain more easily in a m/m romance. I've certainly struggled with getting some readers to accept het relationships that have "warts" and even some publishers will balk at obstacles I've thrown in front of my couple. To me, these things make the characters real, embraceable. I always enjoy your friendship and support.


  2. Thank you, Margie.
    I agree that this genre offers so much more to both the author and the reader. It allows the author to explore more situations and gives a larger range of characters to choose from. While the characters often find their choices limited, the author doesn't.
    I have never been interested in the romance genre. The closest I have gotten previously was Mary Stewart's gothics, an adventure story involving a woman with a side of romance. I read these for the story, not the romance.
    M/m romance is much the same, a story with a side of romance. And the romance is still fraught with dangers all it's own.
    And of course, I enjoy the consummation of their love.

  3. You make some very good points there, Kei.

    You're totally right about why guys watch f/f porn. Is watching m/m porn somewhat similar though? Or can women just sit back and admire the view more without feeling the need to imagine themselves in the scene?

    Women definitely read more, so m/m stories are a different thing, so again I agree with you there. I also like the way m/m can be in so many different situations than m/f whose settings and circumstances are so limited in real life.

    This creates a lot more variety in story and then you can add in the always underlying conflict of society's attitude to them.

    So much more interesting than the endings that seem to only revolve around the wedding, the house and the babies.

    hugs to you and Julie for having you on.

  4. Hi AB!

    I can't speak for all women, but I for one have no interest in being in the action with the hot guys. I don't think I am in the majority. Consider all the "I wanna watch" comments that women make. I will admit that there are a fair number of sandwich comments as well, but not so many of them and more frequently from the men.

    I truly can't imagine a guy actually reading a lesbian romance. Penthouse Forums, but not a true romance.

    Just saying that men do "X" so women do the polar opposite is unrealistic. It doesn't fly with so many other situations so why should it be any different here?

    I enjoy it and that is what is most important to me.


  5. The straight men I've known have absolutely no clue about the beauty and eroticism of same-sex couples. I think most DO think the only thing the women are missing is cock; theirs. They want in.

    I still find it interesting women read m/m erotica but then again, I'm still stunned that I'm actually writing the stuff!

    Good points, Kei!

  6. Hey Johnny!

    Yeah, men just don't get it. The straight ones are like WTF! The gay ones are like "I like it, but why do you?" I guess the short answer is: It's HOT! The trite "Who wants a hot guy and some chick when you can have two hot guys" gets bandied about a lot by the fangirls because it is true.

    I first ran across yaoi watching an anime called Yami no Matsuei. The bad guy traps the good guy and kisses him. And I was hooked. I watched that scene several times. Dug around a lot and found out that was called yaoi. Then I found some yaoi that made that look like nothing.

    I made a friend who asked me to edit her slash and turned me on to m/m romance. The rest is history...

    I'm surprised that I am writing anything. I don't consider myself an author. But m/m? No, that part isn't a surprise.

    Wish I could tell you exactly what I find most compelling about m/m fiction. All I can say is that it touched something inside of me and hasn't let go.


  7. I still say part is them being able to go places and do things a female couldn't do. The story I'm currently writing? No way could one of them be a female. The plot just wouldn't work (let alone the sex). You try it some time. Think of a good m/m romance and see if a woman could ever be in those places or do those things.

    You guys don't realize how much freedom you have even in this "enlightened" age.

  8. I grew up with that good old double standard. I was good enough to do man's work, but not good enough to get the perks that went with being a man. I was the oldest, but couldn't do some things until the little brother was old enough to do them too. Like having him along somehow made it okay for me to be doing them. I don't miss that.

    But as far as the stories go? For me that doesn't play a role in my decision as a reader. I guess it does unconsciously play a role in some of the stories I write.

    This enlightened age isn't perfect, but it's a lot better than it used to be.

  9. I can't speak for anyone else - but me personally, I enjoy m/m for the romance. For the 'awwwwww' factor, if I can find that in f/m or even f/f then I'll read those also. Yes, I also enjoy the smex but that isn't at the top of the list. Love isn't about the bodies - it's about the people the bodies house.

    Now, calm down, I'm not stupid or blind - I understand the packaging does have something to do with it . . . but for me it's at a different level also. But I can only speak for me.

    Thanks for this blog Kei . . . as always you rock!

  10. Hi Hav!

    Thank you. Glad you liked it.

    I like the "awww..." factor as well and want a HEA ending, but I can live without it if the story is good. Not all of the stories I read and like are all sweetness and rainbows. The only thing I truly dislike is when one of the characters dies, which is usually only in the yaoi.

    I've recently been reading an author that doesn't hand his characters a nice happy ending. They have to fight for it and may have to settle for HFN. I still very much enjoy these stories even though one or the other of the characters spends a lot of time unhappy and even when they reach the end of the story you know that they are happy but don't get the fireworks and the earth moving. I would like to see a little more denouement with his works. But I find it hard to put his books down all the same.

    The smex is important as well. I will read and enjoy a story without it, if the story line is good. But sometimes I feel cheated if it isn't in there. I like everything from a nice tastefully implied sex scene up to the complete visual, it just depends on the story. But the ones that really get my blood pumping have lots of details.

    I guess it all comes down to the author's style for me. Do I like how they write? I have read a few things that I didn't care for the style, but was interested in the story line; however, I rarely do that.


  11. Wow, you guys done said it all! I love a hard fought for HEA, it means so much more. Ans two hot guys in the sack....I don;t need to elaborate! You all know!

  12. I can't keep my eyes off the photo of the naked guys in bed! :D HOT!

  13. I like reading about the trials and tribulations that gay men go through. Are they out are they closeted. Will their relationship stand the test of time?

  14. Deanna, Trekfan and Lily,

    I'm sorry it's take me so long to get back to you. I swear I checked back here for a couple of days after the original post.

    Deanna, I know about your preferences for hot men and what they should be doing with one another! I've got to agree with you on that as well as a HEA that they had to earn. Not just have it handed to them like in more traditional romances.

    Trekfan, if you like that photo, you would love the album it comes from. I have over 200 Hot Guyz. You should look me up on Facebook.!/profile.php?id=100000722190969

    Lily, you are so right. These men have to carve out their own place in the world. Even though everyone has to do that for themselves, these men have to face and overcome the social mores of their family, friends, co-workers and if that wasn't enough every person around them. Sometimes they are lucky and some of these people are supportive, sometimes not so much. Even the lucky ones still face an uphill battle to keep their place.

    Trekfan and Lily, I hope to see you on Facebook.
    Deanna, you'll have to bring the hotties this time.