My Response to Becoming Dr. Grey—Chapter 30
Have you ever laughed through tears? That’s pretty much where I am right now. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not crying, but I am kind of laughing through tragedy, for lack of a better word. The opinions on this chapter were quite varied, ranging from totally understanding where I was coming from and getting the complete and total gist of how the BDSM aspect plays out in the life of a practicing married couple (even if the wife is pregnant) to the completely appalled and horrified, and I do mean horrified. (The only comment on my Facebook author’s page ended with “horrible, horrible.”)
I’ve posted Chapter 30 which, as you all know, means that right now I’m churning out Chapter 35, and I must say that I find myself in a bit of a conundrum as to how to proceed. So, to begin with, I just want to address a couple of things from the last chapter.
First, the cold shower water—one person went so far as to refer to it as water torture. Let’s review…
“He positions me right under one of the blasting showerheads with him. Shit, the water feels like little knives all in my skin. How does he stand this? We stand there for a few moments until I’m shivering, then the water starts to warm up. Thank God! My skin is quite sensitive from the cold water and I don’t like it. He never flinched once.”
Notice she said WE! He didn’t make her stand under the water by herself; they stood there together. However, I would like to bring your attention to one more, tiny little thing…
“He switches the water on at max. Jeez! Arctic water spurts over my backside, and I squeal—then stop, mindful once more that José is above us. It’s cold and I’m fully clothed. The chilling water soaks into my dress, my panties, and my bra. I’m drenched and I cannot stop giggling.”
Does that look familiar at all? If it doesn’t, it should. You know why? Because it’s from Chapter 20 of Fifty Shades Darker. Were you equally as appalled when he stood under freezing cold water with her when they were being playful as you were when he did it when she was about to be punished? Because that’s actually where I got the idea, but I guess we just conveniently forgot about Erika’s little use of cold water because it was all playful and stuff, right?
Next, a couple of people thought that Ana putting coats at every door was a dig at Christian. I must say that had me a bit conflusterbated (one of BG’s made-up words… don’t try to Google it) because I had just read comments about Ana being this poor battered wife and then I read comments about her taking a dig at her battering husband (they may not have been in the same context or comments—forgive me if I misconstrued that). So, you can imagine my confusion. But just for shits and giggles, let’s image that even though she accepted it, she might have considered that being spanked as a punishment wasn’t really a pleasant experience. Remember her inner thoughts… “You wanted pain. You wanted submission. You wanted to teach me a lesson. You got what you wanted.” Although she didn’t resent him for spanking her, she obviously didn’t like it. Could it possibly be that she doesn’t want to get spanked again? I mean, since so many people were so offended by the first spanking, could placing the coats at the exits possibly be her way avoiding a repeat performance? Just something to run around your brain for a while.
Moving on, I’m sorry to disappoint anyone who seems to think that Ana should have safeworded and Ana needs to have this long, drawn-out talk with Christian about this punishment and Ana needs to renegotiate this Dom/sub contract that never existed between them. Ana’s not having a problem with this punishment—everyone else is! I think she said it best when she said, “I didn’t need to safeword, Christian, but apparently, you needed me to.” She may have been feeling some type of way for a bit at first, but obviously, by the end of the next day, she was going to Lamaze, popping popcorn, and watching Disney. I know that may not sit well with some of you—you feel that she should walk around in a limbo cloud pondering her feelings and hashing out her emotions and the meaning of life until she comes up with some meandering conversation that she’ll have with Christian that will bring closure to this story for you. Well, that may or may not happen, but don’t hold your breath because right now, it’s not going to. She’s a shrink who married a Dom. She’s not completely clueless. She knows who she married. She got over it. I kind of need everybody else to do that, too.
Also, the bruising… hmmm. How do I put this gingerly? Does anyone remember somewhere in the Trilogy, Christian says, “You should see what I can do with a cat or a cane?” and Ana says, “I’d rather not?” It was something on the lines of that. Did we all forget that Christian is a Dominant? I’m thinking that because he married Ana, we’ve forgotten that he’s a Dominant. We also seem to think that he’s our Dominant, not Ana’s Dominant and that we can tell him how to act, not Ana—who has not told him that he can’t be a Dominant anymore. And if he behaves—or misbehaves in a certain way, we go so far as to tell Ana what she should be telling him! Also, as our Dominant, I believe that we want him to treat Ana the way that we want him to treat us, not the way that he would treat Ana.
I know… I know… I know that we get invested in the characters and we scream at them like we scream at the television. In fact, I’m getting a bit off the topic here. What I should be talking about is the bruising. What I should be saying is that in a BDSM relationship—Bondage/Discipline, Master/slave, Husband/Wife (in BDSM context), Domination/submissive, Daddy/little, Owner/pet, Sadomasochism, you name it—there is some real bruising. I’ve seen some bruising that will make you gag and run for the hills and I can gather some pictures if you like, far more than a little black and blue from a hand print on your butt cheek. And as proud as Christian is about what he can do with a cane—bearing in mind how he was handling the bamboo reed in the backyard in Aspen in Fifty Shades Freed (or did everyone miss the cane reference there?)—I’m pretty sure that he knows how to leave a welt or five and trust me, those things break skin.
In addition, about the characters and their growth, or maturity, or whatever changes you may be expecting, let me put your mind at ease. WHAT YOU SEE IS WHAT YOU GET. If you’re looking for some Extreme Home Makeover “Move that bus” reveal, you’re going to be disappointed. There’s going to be some epiphanies in their lives, some parenting transitions, some life changes, things like that. But if you’re waiting for them to “grow up,” yeah, keep waiting. Good luck with that. They’re going to keep having fun; they’re going to keep making stupid ass mistakes; they’re going to keep pissing us off; they’re going to keep having hot sex; crazy shit is going to keep happening around them; they’re going to keep having great times, stalkers, people out to get them, maybe even another phantom relative pop up, who knows? You wanna know why? Because that’s what people do—and when they stop, they die! Who they are is who they are, so if you’re waiting around expecting someone else or waiting for some magnanimous change expecting these characters to somehow or another all of a sudden become “normal,” you probably want to move on because that’s never going to happen. Although I do try to keep things as realistic as possible, I fucking hate normal.
After more than one person has made it crystal clear that the Valerie storyline is just gonna drag on forever and woe is us because we’re gonna die before we find out what’s going on with her and when we finally do it’s gonna be a dud like the computer story and one person even insulted my intelligence because I wasn’t writing the story fast enough for her taste, I have come to believe and perpetuate that if the story has become to tedious or cumbersome for anyone to read, then they should feel free to write the story that they would like to read because that’s what I’m doing.
There’s only one other time I decided to kill a storyline after I had pre-written it and that was when I wrote Edward having sex with Ana when she was chained to the bed. In my original version, when she awoke from her stupor, he was actually having sex with her. It was too much for me and I couldn’t upload it. I deleted the whole scene—it was just too much, especially after I had put Ana in a place where she had already been raped by Cody. So instead, I had her wake up right when he was about to do deed and you all know the rest.
I said that to say this—first, I’ve been badgered so badly about the Valerie storyline that congratulations. You won’t hear anything else about her until I’m ready to reveal what’s going on with her or unless her immediate behavior is crucial to what’s going on with her or the immediate storyline. So if you see her in the story, just wave, pay attention to where you saw her, and let her breeze on through.
Second, a little secret—the way I write… I have 34—count them, 34—storylines pre-written and waiting to be stuck into the story somewhere. I just put two of them together and figured out where they’re going to go tonight. They’ll probably be chapter 36 or 37. However, picture my position right now. I’m a budding author hoping to be published soon. What’s my platform—erotic fiction… right now, exploring BDSM to be precise. I’ve amassed a small following of faithful readers, and yet some of these same readers who watched Christian flog a pregnant Ana while she was shackled to the ceiling in the epilogue of Fifty Shades Freed can’t stomach a cold shower and hand spanking because it was part of a punishment from a Dominant husband to his pregnant submissive wife.
And now I’ve come full circle. I’ve come back to the laughter through tears or laughing through tragedy, should we say, because right now I feel like I’m censored and I don’t know what to do about it. Out of these 34 storylines, some of them involve testing Ana’s limits and bringing her more into Christian’s world, which is why I brought up “killing storylines” because I’m thinking about killing them and taking them to a forum that can better handle them!
Of course, Christian is standing there glaring at me threatening me with endless nights of “Henry the XIII” and he doesn’t give a flying fuck if I make him do the whip, the nae nae, or the Macarena. He’s particularly excited about a scene involving a lunge whip even though it would make a few people all cringy and mad (Keep your shirt on, Grey!). So there you have it. There’s my thoughts on Chapter 30, all of the comments, and where the story may be going. Everyone else had an opportunity to have their say, I feel like I should have an opportunity to have mine.
Somebody said something about being weary or my story being wearisome. You want to know what’s wearisome? Having to worry about whether or not my research is correct because somebody is going to check me about some minor or major fact in the story; having to worry about if I should boring down my story or fill it with fluff because I don’t want to offend someone with big bad Dom Christian or whiny, inconsiderate drama queen Ana’s behavior; having to be concerned if my storylines are realistic enough or maybe too realistic that they last so long that when they finally do come to fruition, they turn into duds; that maybe I should write chapters that are 2000 words instead of 10,000 words so that the storylines can move faster, so that the story can be thirty chapters instead of 80 chapters.
That way I don’t have to worry about Doms and subs telling me that my research is wrong and people telling me that my story cruel and my characters suck and everything stinks and it’s dragging on forever! I can cut the chapters short and wrap everything up so that we can hurry up and find out what happens to Val and get the babies born and Green Valley and Elena’s trial and Edward’s lawsuit and any other storylines that are still hanging out there and kill all the rest of this crap floating around in my head and they lived happily ever after. The End!