After writing Marjorie Diaz, my second book, I’ve run into a lot of issues with Marjorie Diaz being ace. Here are some things I’ve learned and had people say to me post-publication:
1. Nobody knows what “ace” is.
If you use the term “ace” a lot of people are like “wtf is that??” In fact, most people (INCLUDING people in the LGBT space) don’t even know what “asexuality” is. Even in California where I live, in the gayest city in the United States, I’ve had to explain that shit so much.
2. People don’t think asexuality is real
Once I explain what ace or asexual is to people, they usually try to tell me it “isn’t real”. Like, what? Yes, it is. It is very, very real and It is 100% okay not to like sex!
3. People were mad I didn’t have sex in my book
I’ve had a few people get PISSED at me for not having sex in Marjorie.
Like. WHEN WAS I GONNA WRITE A SEX SCENE? I literally mention in CHAPTER 1 that Marjorie is ACE (I say asexual because in my focus groups 95% of people didn’t know what “ace” was).
There was nowhere for me to put a sex scene. A few people suggested I write a scene with Marjorie’s roommate having sex instead, but the great thing about that is the whole book is from Marjorie’s perspective.
It’s like, you write one sex scene in a fluffy novel about nymphs and everyone believes you can write ace characters.
4. “I don’t believe your character is actually ace”
Like 3, this one is really Marjorie centric.
I’ve had several people tell me to my face while reading my book that they “don’t believe Marjorie is actually ace” and oh my God I can’t even begin to tell you how much this pisses me off.
YES. MARJORIE IS ACTUALLY ACE! 100%. SHE IS L I T E R A L L Y ASEXUAL. There is no sex or even really kissing in the book because of this. While Marjorie doesn’t mind kissing, she and Patrick never get around to that part of the relationship.
There’s a reason in book 2, but it hasn’t been revealed yet.
5. Ace people can’t be romantic
This is literally not even true and idk where people are getting this. Ace and Aro are two different things. Though I do think some people include Aro on the ace spectrum, the two are not mutually exclusive.
In fact, in Marjorie Diaz, a lot of the book is about the romance between Marjorie and her chosen love interest, Patrick. There’s no kissing on the lips, but there are kisses on the cheeks, cuddling, hand-holding, etc. There’s so much fluff it’ll rot your teeth.
Yet I was still railed for not having enough romance. There are different ways of being romantic outside of sex and making out.
I mean there’s literally a part where Patrick carries Marjorie to the subway because she has a migraine. I’m sorry you straights don’t experience cute fluff like that.