I post my book promos and blog articles to most of the large book groups on Facebook. I think it’s good form to look at what others are posting if I expect them to look at what I’m posting. A few days ago when I did that, chill bumps ran down my back ~ not the good kind.
Book covers with women in various stages of bondage graced book covers on some of the biggest book groups. Pretty models with mascara streaked faces from tears. Immediately, in my spirit, I thought women don’t want this for themselves. This abuse of women and bondage craze in fiction titillates and may even be addictive, but does it satisfy, really satisfy? I think not. Despite all the so-called political and sociological advances its touted women have made, more and more of us are living lives of quiet desperation. I sense women’s souls are starving.
The images of women in pop-culture are horrendous. On the surface women seem to delight in it, but I wonder when they go home at night, shed their work-day power-suits, and sit on the edge of their beds in their Victoria’s Secret undies, are they deeply happy? Do they feel they’ve been respected, honored, valued, that day? Or have they had to claw and fight for place? I suspect it’s the latter. They’ve had to fight like alley cats. I further suspect women are exhausted from the battle.
Honestly, I think most men are confused and disillusioned by women who revel in drinking more straight shots at the bar than they do. Yet reality TV shows depict this every day. The women cast-members drink themselves into oblivion, become disheveled, get into physical altercations with one another, and use incredible amounts of profanity. In real everyday life, I think average Joe’s don’t know if they should take the blotto woman safely home, or just leave her, hoping she’s not going to attempt to drive. They must quake at the thought of making a life with such a lush. Is this what they want for the mother of their children?
When the woman is taken home after a night of excessive drinking, or manages to get home herself, is she happy with herself? Does she feel at peace with herself? I believe we all know the answer to that is an unqualified “no”. So why do women keep feeding on these horrid visual images of themselves in the media?
I believe women are better than that. I believe women want to truly have a high level of self-esteem that comes from a sense of inner worth. I think they want to be valued as women, not as gladiators in a sexual arena. In the two detective novels I’ve written (HARMFUL INTENT and DEADLY DESIGNS) I’ve tried to create in the heroine, private investigator Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels, a woman who deals with issues of self-worth and comes out victorious. In addition, she’s a sassy, competent law enforcement professional. Hero Deputy Dawson Hughes is a strong, capable man who’s grappled with his own pain. One reader said he gives “southern comfort” new meaning. Perhaps because of his southern upbringing, he cherishes women and treats them with deep respect.