It was brought to my attention that I used the word "slut" several times in Entangled. (Six in the original text.) I had to go back and do a search because it's not something that stuck out in my head. That's lingo I grew up hearing all through high school - never even considered it could cause controversy.
Apparently, another author was getting tarred and feathered for "Slut Shaming." I had to look up this term because it's the first I'd heard of it: "The act of making a woman feel guilty or inferior for being sexually active."
I felt a tinge defensive when I first received the email even though it wasn't accusatory in the least. (I appreciate the heads up. Better a personal email than a public beating.) I come from a long line of strong, independent women. My heroines are friggin' ninjas, man, total Woman Power! Bam!
After a few days of pondering, I had to admit that personally, I'm not fond of the word "slut" and would rather say "miniskirt" than "slutty skirt" as I did twice (and now changed). Why does a short skirt have to be slutty?
I actually like one of the new passages much better now. I call it Thing 1 and Thing 2. (The parts in blue used to say "two of McKinley High's biggest sluts" and then further down used to say "speaking of sluts.")
After class, Charlene’s best friends, Brittany and Kiki, practically shoved Thea aside to get to Graylee. Both girls were wearing long leather boots over skinny jeans.
“Where’s Charlene?” Brittany demanded at the same time Kiki asked, “How is she?”
“She’s at home and she’s fine.”
“Obviously she’s not fine. She just had her heart ripped out,” Brittany said.
“And yet it still beats,” Graylee said. “Excuse me, ladies; I’ve got to get to class.” She felt bad ditching Thea that way, but she wasn’t about to stick around for a lecture on broken hearts from Thing 1 and Thing 2.
And speaking of heart breakers, Stacey turned the corner with Blake’s arm draped over her shoulder.
This was updated as of June 3, 2012. There's nothing I can do about the 22,000+ copies that were downloaded free last month during amazon promo days, but I'm happy to have it changed for the paperback addition, which just became available this week on amazon.
I also cleaned up the language as best I could except when Gray, in the guise of Charlene, is joking around with Brittany and they're calling each other "bitch" then "super bitch" then "super mega bitch." Try reading it as "jerk" and it sounds plain stupid. I'd rather offend a few people than water down the story too much.
Just made changes to Duplicity as well based on a review on Goodreads in which a gentleman expressed annoyance at my use of the terms NetFlix and Kindle. I use these terms like I would Kleenix. Didn't even notice, but I'd sooner use something universal so it's been switched to TV and eReader.
Now back to working on book three where there are no sluts, no bitches, and no Kindle devices - just good old fashioned magic and romance.
(I originally posted on this subject June 6, 2012 at Goodreads.)