image001Please welcome Elene Sallinger, award winning erotic romance author of Reflection!

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Why I Write, by Elene Sallinger

Why do I write? This is not an easy question to answer though it might seem like one on the surface. In fact, the answer to that question has changed over time. Had you asked that question in 2004 when I took my very first writing class, I would have told you that I write to entertain. My writer’s journey began with children’s stories that I told to my daughter and then wrote down and illustrated prompting me to take my first class to get some structure on how to do it well. I just wanted to tell a good story.

In 2008, the answer would have been that I write to educate. I spent that year in a flurry of consumer education articles on the diamond industry. I spent years obtaining certifications from the preeminent institution in this country, the Gemological Institute of America, only to realize once I actually began working in the industry that it is one of the most corrupt industries run by some of the most heinous cartels in the world. I simply wanted the American public to understand what they were doing if they were going to buy into the completely artificial and manufactured “need” to own a diamond.

Had you asked me that question in 2011, when I published my first piece of contemporary erotica, I would have told you I wrote to explore the human sexual condition, to smash boundaries and to titillate all in the same breath. I believe the repression and skewed sensibilities surrounding sex hold us back as a people and breed ignorance and intolerance. I wanted to do my small part to work against that.

In January of 2012, however, I would have told you I wrote to save my life. Everything around me was in a shambles and I couldn’t figure out why. My relationship was a disaster, my psyche was in tatters and I was semi-suicidal. Writing during this time was an outlet for putting the puzzle pieces of my self-destruction together into a picture I could recognize.

Answering that question now, however, is much more complex. I write because I can do nothing else. In any given moment the reason will change. I might be raging against the American governmental complex, or the Puritanical legacy of America that shames us all around sex. I might be writing to entertain, or titillate, or to encourage, or to simply ruminate. But, in all things, I write because my voice, my thoughts, my ability to string two words together is a freedom that I cherish and in the cherishing am driven to exercise.

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