Contemporary Erotica, 2008
Poor Maya. She likes happy endings and daydreams of romantic fantasies even when she’s supposed to be at work after college at the nearby diner. You can imagine how well she fits into her creative writing class, I’m sure. She can’t stand the works written by her fellow students, which are all about people committing suicide and what not after a lifetime of depressing experiences because it is so cool and arty-farty to tell people that life sucks. She likes happy endings. She likes writing about people falling in love.
Fortunately, it is much easier to blank out talks like how she is wasting her talent on “porn for women” or “fairy stories” and what not when the creative writing instructor, Professor James Reardon, is hot. Even if he’s a twit who won’t give her an A even when he admits that she writes well because of the kind of stories she insists on presenting in class. I’m sure you know where this story is heading.
I don’t know what to make of Paperback Romance, because while I have no problems with other aspects of this short story, I don’t like James. He’s a hypocrite, a most unlikable one in my opinion. While I think it’s cool that Maya is willing to stand by her decision to write what she loves to write, I wish she would go find a better boyfriend to play with. I know, I know, when one’s in college, the allure of a handsome older man – especially one who can give you an A+ in everything if you play your cards right – is obvious, but come on. This older man is a hypocritical creep.
All I can say is, if you end up liking James as a character more than I do, I suspect that you will find this one a more quaint and amusing quick read than I do. I really don’t like James at all and this seriously hampers my ability to get into this one.